Last winter semester for me was totally a radical experience . I was in Cusco ,Peru for almost 4 months in different socially responsible projects . These has improved my Spanish skills and global citizenship skills . Being an Asian , the experience I had in Latin America was totally different . However I was able to immerse into their culture through their hospitality ,love and compassion.
My key learning was about the cycle of colonization in Peru . In ancient days Peru was ruled and administered by Inca empire . We still can see the ruins of the Incan culture in Peru . In 18th Century , country was flourishing in all dimensions . However seeing the natural resources of Peru ,Spanish started their colonization in Peru in terms of Christian missions . Spanish has done all crooked ways to get dominance over Incans . While I was in Cusco , I realized all the current church was once the palace of Incans . However there was enough wars and fights during this time period . Through this colonization ,Spanish has taken all the raw materials and natural resources to their country .The major natural resource was the wool of Alpaca . In 1824 , after series of battles , Incan has got independence from Spanish . By that time , Spanish language was very common in Peru instead of Quechua. After this decolonization country was more independent ,but due to lack of good leaders and vision country was not progressing .Even though they had natural resources ,They were not aware how to use in global market .
In 20th Century , colonization was slowly coming back in Peru through globalization and industrialization instead of church mission . The major players in this game of colonization was MNCs ,World Bank,IMF and other financial and charity organizations.They came offering financial aids and white color jobs . The ultimate agenda of this was to gain dominance of Peru market and get the natural resources in a modern strategical ways instead of wars and battles .Through this MNCs has created lot of sweatshops in Peru which runs at cheap labor costs and most unethical ways .This had very adverse effect in traditional and local communities. Traditional market and products has been taken over globalized products . For Example , A baby Alpaca sweater which is authentic and handmaid by local communities may cost around 400soles (120USD) .On the flip side we can get globalized mechanized sweaters which is made up of plastic and synthetic around 40 Soles (12USD) which is not all eco friendly and can cause lot of natural problems such as pollution and physical effects . Most of the people seeing the cheaper rate prefer globalized plastic sweaters compared to Alpaca sweaters which adversely affect the sustainability of the earth . It will also directly impact the traditional markets and local communities which forces them to change their culture ,professions and also even forced migrations for Income generations .
In the last 10 years ,Peru has slowly changed from their tradition and culture to western and capitalist style . Now we can see branch of KFC ,Mc Donald, Starbucks , North Face , Adidas ,etc …. in Peru ,which are main products of globalization which can kill authentic Peru market .
In conclusion ,globalization is the new way of colonization in a systematic and organized way . In my view , we cant stop globalization but we should also consider strategic ways to improve local and domestic markets which can empower ground level communities .
I was working on 3 different socially responsible and innovative projects in Peru which was totally challenging for me .
Project 1# Community Economic Development # Fair Trade
This was basically designing a new project which is executed by local communities based on their assets which will create income generation in the community . Since the community was expert in knitting in Alpaca wool , I have done series analysis and try to contact different Fair Trade organizations which can support the community to compete with MNC Products .
Project 2# Community based tourism .# Fathom# Carnival Tourism# Travel Deep
Cusco ,Peru is the best place in the world ,I have ever visited . According to UNWTO(United Nations World Trade Organization) in 2017, 3,835 000 foreigners has visited Peru which makes Peru 4th Mostly visited South American country after Brazil,Argentina and Chile . The Impact of tourism to the community is very significant .
However there is problem underneath . The main capital flow is happening in only to gigantic tourist companies and big hotels . Even from the airport pick up to drop off;these companies are operating which is readily available in online . This may create some jobs and income to small portion of population . But local communities may not have much impact. To tackle this , I have designed community based tourism in collaboration with Carnival tourism which welcomes tourist to the local communities and spending time in micro level projects . This can increase cash flow to local communities and empower them to fight against global giants.
Project 3# Social marketing and fund raising.
This was based on the orphanage which I was working with in Cusco . I have created online funding page through Go Fund me application which has been spread over different networks for collecting donations and gifts for the orphans . Through digital marketing and boosting , I was able spread the news among different stakeholders . The amount collected was used for buying books and stationary products for the orphans which can eventually reduce their poverty burden.
You can contact me anytime regarding Peru !
Jofin T Lorance