Sol y Luna Association is a non-profit organization committed to making a change in the lives of the Sacred Valley children through holistic education. They offer a high-quality learning environment, ensure the kid’ well-being, and support their local families so that all children can attend school.
Petit Miribel and Franz Schilter arrived in Urubamba-Cusco back in 1998 with a dream in mind: “improve the future for some of the world’s poorest children”. They started in the Sacred Valley by supporting various local schools, improving their infrastructures, and organizing cultural and sports activities. However, it was not enough. They wanted to do more for the kids that had to go to school in the worst conditions or didn’t go at all.
This is why in 2009, they founded the Sol y Luna Association and started the Intercultural Sol y Luna School. Since then, they have been working for the education and inclusion of the children of Urubamba and surrounding communities. Many of the children’s families lack financial resources and face violence or abandonment. The association’s goal is to include them all and offer them the same opportunities as any other kid in the world.
Currently, the school has more than 200 students from 20 different communities. Since 2015, they have Paqari, a center that provides specialized instruction, rehabilitation, therapy, psychological counseling, and social support for children and youth with disabilities in the surrounding Andean communities of Urubamba. They aim to include them progressively in regular classes and in the community.
Also, in 2018 they started their own shelter, Sol y Luna Home, which provides a permanent home for those children who are abandoned or are victims of domestic violence.
How does it work?
Most of the students have a full or partial scholarship, thanks to the support and donations from the Hotel Sol y Luna and its guests, friends, and benefactors’ generosity. Actually, the Sol y Luna Hotel was founded to generate funds to finance the project. Nowadays, it is one of Cusco and Urubamba’s best hotels. The hotel covers the administrative and maintenance needs so that 100% of donations can be directly allocated to children’s needs. They provide education, transportation, snacks and lunch, creative workshops, psychological support, a school for parents, integration trips, an intensive English program, and Quechua classes. Find further information here.
Peruvian Soul and the Sol y Luna Association
It’s been many years since Peruvian Soul and the Sol y Luna Hotel have been working together. We have been strengthening our relationship for many years, and since last year we decided we wanted to be part of this beautiful project.
In 2020, we held Papanoel Trekero, our Christmas event, in the Sol y Luna school. We helped the children in the Paqari program with 3 therapy sessions per week for 3 months. If you want to know more about it, read our blog Papanoel Trekero goes to Sol y Luna School.
How can you help?
When you book a trip with Peruvian Soul, each traveler is donating 3 therapy sessions to a kid with disabilities in the Paqari program. However, due to the pandemic, they are facing many difficulties collecting funds because most of their sponsors and donors come from the tourism sector, one of the most affected industries in the current crisis.
If you wish to donate or help them directly, you can contact Petit Miribel at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their official website. They will be very happy to receive any contribution to continue offering a free home, education, food, and well-being to the most vulnerable children of the Sacred Valley.