~ A letter from Etelvino translated to English by Christina Chaya ~
November 02, 2015
Dear Wilka T'ika Children's Fund Sponsors,
I wish to first thank you, my sponsoring family, whom I honor so much, with all my heart for your financial support. I would like to share that your donation helps me immensely with my academic studies, and as such, is a great happiness to my family for the simple fact that I am continuing my education in Univeristy now; it makes my entire family very happy. My parents and siblings will always be so grateful for your generosity.
My dear community is called Poques, located at 2550m, where we continue traditional practices such as ayni (mutual help in reciprocity), mujun muyuy, sach’a rutuy, etc. My parents are farmers and they enjoy working hard, producing yellow corn, quinoa, barley, oca, potatoes, añu, fava beans, peas and other vegetables. Unfortunately, in the past few years, agricultural production has been greatly affected by contamination, and the urban population currently prefers genetically modified products and using chemical fertilizers, which results in our products decreasing in their economic value. This has directly affected different communities, and now the rural farmers have less power in the markets. Therefore, agricultural production has decreased significantly in the past few years. My parents’ work is not secure in this situation, and therefore they have not been able to support me during my studies in higher education. They work to be able to meet the needs of basic services such as paying for electricity, and to buy basic food supplies such as sugar, salt, etc. Thanks to your humanitarian help, I have been able to continue in my higher education.
When I was studying in the Chumpe-Poques school, Jessica, our principal, arrived thanks to the blessings of Pachamama, the Apus, and auquis. With the generous support of Carol and the Willka T’ika Children’s Fund, we could improve our studies. My family had to also do work in the city to save some money to buy our school supplies. Sometimes we didn’t have enough money for food, but I was guided well by Jessica to study hard. In analyzing my various situations in life, I have learned from all these experiences, and the importance of being helpful to others.
I was determined to do well in school, and I recall on Nov. 17, 2013 at 3pm, after taking the university entrance exam, I received the life-changing news that I was accepted into the university. My dream came true, and I was infinitely grateful for all the support from the Willka T’ika Children’s Fund, especially for the academy classes to prepare us for this exam.
When I received the incredible news that I would then be sponsored for University with your help, I shared this news with my mother and we held hands and cried tears of thankfulness and joy. When my father arrived, he couldn’t believe the news; his joy was overwhelming. You have gifted us so much happiness in our lives, and we are forever thankful. Thank you for supporting me with everything I need to be able to live in Cusco and focus on my studies.
As you know, education is the foundation of human advancement. The mission of my university, Antonio Abad del Cusco, is to prepare professionals of superior academic and humanistic qualities; to be creative and innovative with a solid base in values and principles, and to be able to commit to sustainable social, economic, cultural and political development, within the frame of our region and country’s development.
This semester, I am taking classes in Education, History, Geography, Philosophy, as well as studying English. I am so grateful for your support! With your financial help, I am able to buy my books, eat, travel to my dear village and visit my family, rent projectors for my presentations, and pay for my English classes.
Thank you so, so much!
A big hug from Peru, “I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!”
Etelvino Quispe Huamán