Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Things are looking up in La Raya

On October 18th we wrote about the village of La Raya and the plight of Luzmila Valdera and her daughters. It was our hope that we could raise $1500 to build a house for her. We didn’t come close to that amount but, as it usually seems to happen, things worked out in the end. A local church group agreed to shore up the mud/cane walls of the house and replaced the roof with new galvanized metal. There are still some walls waiting for repair but rain no longer enters the house. With the reinforced walls the house should serve for a few more years.

We visited La Raya today to give the money and clothing we’d received to Luzmila. When we arrived Luzmila was not in the house but a few minutes later she and other workers who had been harvesting rice in nearby rice paddies returned to the village for the noon meal. Luzmila and her 9 year old daughter Ruth work in the rice paddies while 7 year old Romelia stays home to take care of 2 year old Ariana.

With the basic requirement for shelter taken care of we were able to help with other needs, and here I’d like to say a bit about the help we receive from fellow Chiclayanos. The people who help us are not wealthy. They have little themselves but do what they can to assist the very poor. For example Herlinda, who accompanied us today (on the right) was able to contribute a bag of rice and a blouse and skirt for Luzmila. And Herlinda knew of several other women who had an item or two of serviceable clothing. Maribel’s sister Magali contributed a few clothing items for the girls and shoes for Luzmila. One item from this person; another from someone else and before long these modest donations added up to three large bags of much needed clothing…a literal bonanza for this family. We very much appreciate the time, effort and items given from the heart by these people.

The furniture in the house consists of two tables and two bed frames. Thanks to Marco, Jim and others we were able to present Luzmila with $210. She indicated that she will purchase mattresses for the beds and stools so they finally have something to sit on. And there will be some money remaining for other needs. Another example where several modest donations added up to improved quality of life for a family with next to nothing.

And thanks to Lander, Victor, Carmen and several others we were able to present a substantial amount of needed medicines to Doctor Corrales at the medical clinic. We didn’t have the vitamins she indicated were needed during our first visit, but all in all we didn’t do badly.

We would like to give Doctor Corrales the vitamins she asked for, and we would like to help Luzmila with school uniforms and supplies for her daughters Ruth and Romelia. If you’d like to help us do that please visit the Promesa Peru web page to donate.


Readers may remember that last March we wrote of Edith Fuentes and her difficulties. We’re still occasionally in touch with her. Her circumstances remain pretty much the same. Last December there was another hearing regarding possible work release for her husband. Two members of a three-judge panel voted no so he remains in prison. Edith’s attitude is good and she continues to keep her chin up while hoping and believing that tomorrow will be better. There’s always hope.


  1. I just came across your blog by chance. Our daughter has been living in Peru the last 6 months and will be there for another year. She is serving a mission for our church and was just transferred to Pimentel. It's exciting to learn about this beautiful country through her letters and blogs like yours. We hope to visit Peru when she is finished her mission. In the meantime, I will continue to learn more about Peru

  2. Welcome to our blog! Pimentel is not bad duty for your daughter. We know lots of folks there including a contingent of expats from the States.