Projects in Peru
The Community Health project targets impoverished rural families who have children under the age of 3, pregnant mothers and vulnerable rural youth ages 12-17. Community Health Facilitators work with rural health post staff, community health promoters, and other community leaders to initiate and sustain healthy behavior change in mothers and other caretakers by promoting appropriate nutrition, improved hygiene practices, and early childcare and stimulation. This work is achieved by facilitating household visits for an average of 20-30 mothers who have children under 3 years of age and/or pregnant women. These household visits are coordinated the health center staff and/or local health promoters. Community Health Facilitators will visit the local health facility on a daily basis to coordinate household visits and to coordinate monthly health education sessions to promote healthy nutrition with mothers.
Community Health Facilitators also collaborate with local
high schools to form youth peer educator groups to help promote and sustain
healthy behavior change, such as improved life skills and leadership,
adolescent pregnancy and STI prevention, including abstinence and correct
condom use. In collaboration with high school teachers, community health
facilitators co-lead educational sessions for classrooms of 10 – 25 students
every week. Community Health Facilitators use interactive and participatory
training approaches to role model how to train to sexual reproductive health
topics more effectively. Teachers and youth peer educators learn how to apply
these training methods in their work.
Teachers and Community Health Facilitators work together to identify and
coach youth peer educator groups so that they take on leadership roles in
supporting healthy choices among their peers.
Youth in Development
Youth Development Facilitators work directly with youth and youth service providers to help build life skills, enhance their engagement in the community, and develop healthy life choices. Life skills education focuses on developing a positive identity, financial savings culture, vocational skills, critical thinking and healthy lifestyle activities. It also includes developing engaging activities such as organizing career fairs, mentoring activities, and workshops on mock interviews and job shadowing. Healthy lifestyle development focuses on sexual and reproductive health, alcohol and substance abuse prevention. Additionally, Youth Development Facilitators may have the opportunity to incorporate arts, sports, music, tutorials, and other exciting after-school programs in their work.
One of the primary roles a Youth Development Facilitator plays is working with the local high schools by supporting the implementation of their tutoring program. Tutoring classes account for 1-5 hours a week depending on the size of the school and the programs it supports. During tutoring classes, Youth Development Facilitators work with tutoring coordinators to co-facilitate education topics focused on life skills, self-esteem, career orientation, and youth peer support.
Development Facilitators also accomplish their objectives by working with the
local health post staff who are expected to deliver health education talks at
the local schools. The focus of these
health education classes may include sex education, alcohol/drug abuse
prevention or domestic violence. Youth Development Facilitators also have
opportunities to coordinate with the local municipality to facilitate summer
Water and Sanitation
The Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Project began in 2008 after a major earthquake struck the southern zone of Peru. Water and sanitation is currently one of the six priorities of the Peruvian government. This creates an opportunity for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) Facilitators to support government WASH priorities at the rural community level which traditionally have the most need and lowest access to government programs. They focus on building the capacity of local government authorities and local water committees to develop Water and Sanitation Safety Plans and stronger management practices of the water and sanitation services.
WASH facilitators work with the water and sanitation
Technical Municipal Area (“ATM”) and local Health Centers/Posts. In collaboration
with the ATM, WASH Facilitators build strong working relationships with the
local water committees and train them to increase their capacity in
administration, operation and maintenance of the water and sanitation services.
At local health center/posts WASH Facilitators work with the environmental
health personnel or the health promotion area to strengthen sanitation
education training in households and schools. This work could include
maintaining water treatment systems, building latrines, and teaching proper
hand washing techniques.
Community Economic Development
The Community Economic Development (CED) Program has been working in Peru since 2002. The CED program seeks to enhance the capacity of the most vulnerable populations – especially women and youth in rural communities- to expand their economic opportunities in income generation, entrepreneurship and financial education so that they can achieve their economic security and improve their quality of life.
Community Economic Development (CED) Facilitator’s will have the opportunity to collaborate with a variety of community leaders, including Economic and Social Development Government offices, women’s groups, teachers, and community-based organizations. This may include teaching basic personal money management skills such as budgeting, savings, keeping business/personal accounts separate and other related topics to women’s groups, small business owners, and students. They will also create and support community savings groups (small community-formed groups that provide savings and lending services to one another).
Additionally, CED Facilitators train entrepreneurship and basic business skills for youth at high schools and technical institutions. They may also train community high school teachers in planning and facilitating entrepreneurship courses for their students.
CED Facilitators also have the opportunity to develop and facilitate a series of business skills workshops. This will include mentoring individual business owners to apply basic business skills, promote women’s economic empowerment, organize and improve their business practices, and in some cases start new small/micro enterprises.