Students Offering Support 2013 Trip Recap
Hogar de Menores (Home for Children) “Maria Salome Ferro” and Casa Acogida “Virgen Natividad”
Diva Hurtado, SOS President
Nidia Rivera, SOS VP of Outreach
Andres Aarango, SOS VP of Human Resources
Adriana Prado, SOS VP of Logistics
Gilda Portalatin, SOS VP of Finance
Jessica Leong, University of Alberta
Eric Feldman, FIU Global Learning Coordinator, SOS Chapter Advisor
Project Preparation and Funding
During the 2012-13 academic year, student leaders in the FIU chapter of Students Offering
Support hosted “Exam-AID” tutoring sessions for professor-specific sections of
classes in chemistry, mathematics, physics, and biology. By charging an average of $19 for a 3-hour tutoring session (accompanied by a printed material guide), $5,816.87 was
raised to fund the project. Additional funds were raised by each student for travel costs and living expenses. The project was selected by the students
from a list of options compiled by the Students Offering Support Head
renovation project completed by our SOS students was developed and organized by
Learning for Hope.
Renovation of Main Classroom: Students repainted the four walls, entranceway, and all
tables and chairs of the main study room in the orphanage. Two shelves were also built and installed for students to store their book bags.
Construction of Chicken Coop: Students cleared an outdoor area of rubble and the
vestiges of a previous roof structure and constructed, under the guidance of a
contractor, a chicken coop (complete with walls, roof, and caging). The coop will be used to provide eggs for the orphanage kitchen.
Renovation of Casa Acogida Courtyard: An
additional project initiated by the students, the outdoor courtyard of Casa Acogida, the section of the facility for residential girls from abusive situations, was plastered and
painted. The lines on the sports court were also repainted.
May 16: Students rested, participated in a
Shaman-led welcoming ceremony, and visited the Plaza del Armas (Cusco’s main
May 17: Students toured the orphanage, where they were introduced to the students and explained the main projects they would
be working on.
May 18-19: Students toured Cusco’s countryside,
including the regions of Pisac, Huaran, and Urubamba.
May 20-24: Students worked on the orphanage project.
May 25: Students visited Machu Picchu
May 27-28: Students completed the orphanage project.
May 29: Students visited Cusco’s famed Temple of the Sun participated in a closing and
dedication ceremony where the completed projects were presented to the students
and orphanage administration, along with a digital slideshow of photos of the
trip, presented on the multimedia cart purchased for the facility with the FIU
May 30: Students return to Miami
In addition to their work on the orphanage, students were able to experience the culture of Cusco first hand through the host families they lived with during their two weeks in Peru. They witnessed and participated in Catholic and indigenous Andean religious ceremonies. Exploration of Cusco’s countryside provided students with a first-hand look at festivals and traditions central to the Peruvian culture. Students were also introduced to the indigenous Quechua languages spoken in the South American Andes.