There isn’t a single area Esperança serves that hasn’t been touched by the COVID-19 pandemic. Learn more about Esperança’s COVID-19 relief efforts in all five of its partner countries here. Even the farmers of Ccapaccasa, a small rural village in southern Peru, haven’t escaped its effects.
“Due to the coronavirus, we are quarantining in our homes and in our communities,” says Nelson, a 28-year-old farmer and father of two. “We cannot go out to the districts and there’s nowhere else to sell our vegetables.”
That’s a problem, because Nelson is an active participant in Esperança’s agricultural training project – and since he’s employed what he’s learned, he’s got more produce than he knows what to do with!
“They’ve supported us from the beginning, introducing us to different products, such as quinoa, beans, and variety of vegetable seeds. We already have cabbage, garlic, cauliflower, lettuce, chard, parsley, and onion, that I transplanted a week ago. They also showed me a natural fertilizer which we can use to fumigate with and grow everything faster without using chemicals.”
With everything he learned, Nelson now has more than he needs to provide his family with vitamin-rich, nutritious meals. Through the agricultural training project, he’s also learned how to construct a sturdy greenhouse. Using a special raschel mesh that lets in light but also protects from frost and hail – that you provided – his vegetables are safe from the harsh Peruvian weather and are flourishing.
Nelson isn’t the only one who has benefited from the training sessions – 90 families participated in the program. Even better, Nelson and others like him have been eager to share their newfound expertise with other farmers in their community – expanding your impact exponentially.
Before the pandemic hit, Nelson had no problem selling his suddenly abundant produce at the Sunday fairs in the capital of the district of Mara. Currently those fairs have been canceled for quarantine. But thanks to the entrepreneurial skills he picked up in training, he’s managed to make up for the lost market time by selling to the communities around him.
Thankfully, this pandemic won’t last forever. Soon Nelson, and other farmers like him, will be allowed to travel back to market. And thanks to your support, their lives will continue to improve with every bountiful harvest.