A week or so before we headed to Peru we started hearing the news: That intense rains were causing unprecedented flooding and landslides, mainly in the Cusco and Puno regions, the two areas on our tour.
It was difficult to get news on what was happening, but I finally found a Peruvian blog site that showed incredible photos and videos of the disaster.
As we flew to Lima on February 2, Raven and I talked about how we might be able to help. I was really hoping to do some hands-on support, and a sweet miracle allowed that to happen.
I wrote on facebook that I was in Cusco, and a college friend, Annika wrote back: Hey, are you going to see Pilar while you are there? So I emailed Pilar, and yes indeed she was in Cusco! We talked via skype and I found out she was leaving in an hour to deliver blankets to people affected by the flood.
And so I was soon snuggly packed into a jeep with four women and Pilar’s 6-year old niece, Asraya. Pilar’s sister, Sunday, lives in Cusco with her three children and husband. They are building a yoga retreat near Pisac (which was somehow miraculously not affected by the flooding..) So Sunday knows what was most needed and the areas most affected.
Our first stop was to buy blankets at a local store; we bought 100 but were only able to load 60 into our two cars. The remaining 40 will be brought in another run.
The government has set up blue tents for everyone who lost a home; one area was filled with blue tents curved into the hillside; another village was completely devastated: all the houses and crops remain underwater. This community is now wall to wall tents in a stadium in the closest town; over 300 families. They are in need of fresh food; the government and other organizations have donated rice and beans. In a few months they will also need seed for a new crop. No one knows where they will rebuild their homes, since the area they were living was a dry lake that is now not dry at all.
Thank you so much to all the people that donated money to help these people; as of today we have raised over $1,300! We are very grateful to have the opportunity to help in such a direct way. Sunday will continue to bring supplies out to the villages in the coming months. Pilar heads home tomorrow; we are leaving for Puno tomorrow, but will come back to Cusco in a week and be able to bring more money to Sunday.
For more photos, click here
To read Pilar’s blog, which has extensive photos and video, click here
It takes a while to download the photos, so be patient
To donate via paypal go to tolteccenter.org and scroll down to the donation button…. Blessings!
And here is the original letter Raven wrote, in case you have not seen it…
We are in Peru and it is truly magnificent. As usual the people are lovely and the land here is rich and nourishing. We are very excited to being doing a big ceremony with about 260 people and large number of Incan and North American native elders at Late Titicaca next week. Tune in, the energy is already Rockin!
Perhaps you have heard that Peru has had major flooding over the last few weeks. In the two areas we are visiting over 8000 people are now homeless from mudslides and flooding wiping out their houses and their crops. We are on the ground with people who are heading up relief efforts for these folks. Our dear friend Jorge Delgado is acquiring blankets and food for the people in the Lake Tittcaca region and HeatherAsh’s college friend Pilar is doing the same for the people in the Pisac region close to Cusco and Macchu Picchu areas.
The Toltec Center has already donated $1000 to Jorge’s effort and today we bought 75 blankets and HeatherAsh went with Pilar to deliver them to the folks by Pisac.
We would like to do even more, the people by Pisac need fresh vegatables, water and meat to feed all the folks whose homes were flooded, and we would like to get them and the Lake Titicaca folks more help over the next two weeks we are here.
It is hard to work toward personal freedom when you don’t have food and shelter. Help us help these folks feel a little more spaciousness, a little more gratitude to Spirit, a little more like they are held by the Divine, by sending the money they need to aquire that food, shelter, and warmth that is a bit scarce here at the moment! Just click on the “donate” image below.
All donations are tax deductible, we will happily send you a donation letter with our EIN number for your tax records.
You do not need a paypal account to donate, simply click on the “continue” button at the bottom left of the donation screen to pay with any major credit card without having a paypal account.
Thanks for your time
HeatherAsh, Raven and the staff of the Toltec Center