Archiv für den Monat: November 2018

Amnesty International: Write for Rights

„All human beings are born free and equal.“

This sentence is followed by 29 more articles, forming the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, composed by the United Nations and signed by almost every country of the world in 1948. Like this, every government officially became responsible to guarantee the fulfillment of these human rights for every citizen in order to establish a society of peace and harmony.
Only few years later, in 1961, Amnesty International was founded, an NGO acting worldwide and aiming to control the accomplishment of the human rights. Amnesty works as an independent instance and organizes workshops, courses and offers writing and signing letters that will be sent to the governments or individuals whose rights have been violated.

Every year, a marathon of writing letters called „Write for Rights“ takes place where you get to know 5 cases about violated human rights and then have the possibility to sign the demands for the corresponding countries and to write a letter to one of these victims.

I personally think that Amnesty’s work is highly important and therefore decided to bring the workshop to the school of my voluntary work here in Peru (Colegio Max Planck). With the children of the secondary, I developed a class starting with an introduction to the topic (What are human rights? Why do we need them and why is it worth fighting for them?) and ended with the writing of the letters.

The results were truly amazing. As I conceptualised the workshop in Spanish, the students participated actively and contributed their own ideas and questions. They showed strong interest in the different cases and were shocked by the incredible injustice in all the places that sometimes are closer to us than expected. Reading their letters left me very touched and a bit upset but proud – I literally could feel the frustration but also the solidarity of the students.

Further down on the page you can find some anonymous examples of the letters and photos of the signed texts. In total, there are 141 signatures on 26 completed sheets and more than 60 individual letters with lots of drawings and even a message in Portuguese among them.

I want to sincerely thank Director Arturo Pareces Javier and Mrs. Elsa Salinas for making this project possible and Mr. Moisès for letting me take his history lessons. And finally thank you students, because you are the ones whose voice can change the future!

I will post further links to more articles on other platforms here soon!


Bars, surfing and human rights

Three weeks, several visits at the local hospital and three penicilline injections worked their miracle: I’m finally back among the living and started my routine again as if nothing had happened. There were some nice surprises awaiting such as a more effective Taekwondo training incorporating more fitness elements or a new bus line working as a shortcut for me.

As I still don’t have too much work to do at school, I decided to organise an Amnesty International workshop for the students of the higher classes in order to spread the most basic values human rights stand for. Being part of the annual „Write for Rights“ movement seemed a good opportunity to me to both defend human rights in Peru and sensibilise children for this topic sporadically discussed in school. For further details and photos please visit the separate blog entry!

I also finally came to dedicate more free time to culturally enriching acitivities such as visiting the famous „Huaca del Sol y de la Luna“, another archaeological site of the Moche culture. Not only did I learn lots of new things, I also got to know an artisanal artist, descendent of the Moche, working on ceramics for a living. I even painted some pieces myself and listened to his stories which I enjoyed a lot due to the calm atmosphere in the small village.

Moreover, I went to the cinema for the first time here (Bohemian Rhapsody, what else) and assisted two little concerts in different bars here in Trujillo that were both amazing. The first one presented Criojazz, a fusion between classical Jazz and Peruvian music which was bizarre at first but included great rhythms and sounds in the end. The second one represented a tribute to the Arctic Monkeys, a band I already knew before. The band was incredible and almost everyone was able to sing along which created a very special atmosphere. Both bars seemed a little sketchy in the beginning but soon were full of curious, young and also international people.

Last sunday I finally got to visit the mysterious lagoon of Conache, a small lake in the middle of nowhere but a popular place for a relaxing day out of Trujillo. It was full of families and there were plenty of activities offered but most importantly I tried sandboarding for the first time and I can say it was insanely fun! Climbing up the sanddunes was intense but definitely worth it every time because you pick up speed rapidly and the technique isn’t too difficult. Of course we fell spectacularly the whole time but luckily the sand was soft so we had a lot to laugh. After that, we cleaned off the sand (which was basically everywhere) bathing in the lagoon and spent some more time on the small beach next to it. All in all we really had a good time and I’ll probably come back to that place again.

After the enthusiastic stories of my house mates, I decided to try out surfing here in Huanchaco. I personally was pretty sceptical because I remembered surfing in Spain to be pretty boring but my expectations have definitely been exceeded. A short theory session familiarised us with the correct techniques and soon we tried them out in the water. Swimming against the the waves was tough but surfing on them made it all worth it. Although it was my first lesson, I had lots of fun and I’m definitely going to continue this for the rest of my time here in Peru.

Two days ago, I was invited to the clausura of the olimpiadas maxplancistas 2018, the closing event of the Olympics of my school. Again in Buenos Aires, I watched the impressive dancing performances of each class, cheered with my students for their parents and chatted a little more with the teachers. It was another long day full of activities I appreciated very much.

In the evening, I went to a club for the first time with some friends and I can say it’s pretty different from what I know in Germany. I haven’t made up my mind yet whether I like it too much because as a European girl you’re kind of the center of attention but I haven’t made any bad experience.

This week I’m spending in Pachacámac, a village near Lima for a kulturweit seminar which I will comment on in my next blog entry!

~ Jenny

Algarrobina, Huanchaco and Buenos Aires

Cold milk, pure Pisco, cacao cream, an egg yolk, syrup and some ice cubes – voilà, there you go with your cocktail Algarrobina, one of the best ones I tried so far. And even better: I learned how to prepare it myself during an official cocktail workshop at the Private Northern University at the department of tourism. A fully equipped kitchen and bar next to the rather small conference room show clearly that everything is about practice here. After a short theoretical introduction about Peru’s national 42% liquor Pisco, we watched the professor professionally prepare three classical cocktails. It all looked very easy and a sip of the product convinced us of the quality of the drink. But when it came to us to repeat the few steps, many of us seemed to struggle with the art of a perfect design and taste. We had lots of fun anyway which definitely wasn’t due to our increasing alcohol intake.

Other than that, I finally got to visit Huanchaco again and absolutely enjoyed the surprisingly different atmosphere. The people seem more relaxed and open minded and you’ll find international groups everywhere. Exploring the small town, I discovered a Swiss café with amazing food and I also got to try some new jungle-flavours of cremolada, which basically is ice with different syrups and juices. Friends also recommended for me to climb up to the local church and after a short walk I was able to enjoy a fantastic view over Huanchaco, its beaches and of course the ocean too. It felt so calm just to stand on the hill, hearing the monotonous singing through the open doors of the church and breathing the fresh breeze. As I wanted to catch up on the sunset (which is pretty early at around 6pm every evening here), I needed to hurry finishing my arroz con mariscos (rice with seafood) and when I arrived at the beach, the sky was all dizzy and grey. I still found it fascinating enough to see the sun play hide and seek with the clouds and loved watching it disappear in the waves of the ocean. Suddenly, it got a whole lot colder and I was happy to have brought my jacket. Definitely a place I’ll come back to soon!

Another highlight was the inauguration of the olimpiadas maxplancistas 2018 where I was honored to be part of the judges. Evaluating the children’s and parents’ (!) performances was the best part of the whole day and I took lots of pictures and videos. As I even received an official Max Planck College shirt, I felt like a part of the school’s family which made me proud of my work here. Many students talked to me that day and it was great to see them once in a non-formal context. I’m really looking forward to the clausura event in two weeks!
Unfortunately, spending a day in Buenos Aires, Trujillos part that is the closest to the water, turned out to be highly dangerous. As the sun is burning intensely, you won’t notice the strong wind blowing around you that makes you sick. I experienced this myself spending the following week in my bed, occasionally getting up to prepare the next cup of tea. After ten days I’m still recovering and hope, that I’ll feel better as soon as possible as it’s Halloween today and other great events promise to come up too!

~ Jenny