This book has been an idea in my head for a year and a half. I've already told the story of my journey to Peru and my experiences there, previously on this blog. What I want to convey here is the reason for making this book and why I want as many people as possible to buy it and pass the word along to everyone they know to help me reach my goal of raising $10,000 or more for the children of Peru. If you believe in helping others, please read on and help in any way you can. It will be most appreciated!
This is Washington – affectionately, Washi
Washi was our guide on the trip but he is so much more than that. We all grew to love him, and to admire his tenacity and passion in helping his people, whom we also came to love. With money we raised prior to leaving for Peru, and his help – we were able to directly affect the people most in need, sometimes in remote areas. I saw first hand the poverty and suffering this people live with, yet they smile and offer us food when we enter their home. You can read and see his story and theirs in “Visions of Peru”.
Mama Sentuza, 84
I met Mama Sentuza, 84, who can barely see and who lives in the dirt and rock house she's lived in her whole life. She has no running water except the stream beside her home, no electricity, no health care, and no help – except for Washi! You will meet her and see inside her home in “Visions of Peru”.
We met two children that tagged along with us during an afternoon visit to some Inca ruins. We learned how their story so very closely mirrored Washi's own story, and how his has turned out with a happy ending thanks to the generosity of a lady name Mama Sharon and how hopefully with Washi's help and guidance theirs will too. Without help, their story is sad and bleak. Four children being supported by their mother. The dad is gone and they live in a small one room house with only the clothes on their backs, no beds to sleep in, no money for school supplies, no money for food. This is the story of literally 100s of children and women in small towns everywhere in Peru. They are forced to beg for food, or sing for tourists – as they did for us, as Washi did some 20 years ago – just to survive.
500 Pairs of Shoes for the Children of Peru
We took 500 pairs of shoes to a mountain village and put them on the children's feet ourselves. I saw first hand how bad the need is, and for such little money (to us) we can do so much good. For $1 a pair, they simply cannot afford the luxury of new shoes when they've outgrown them. The support and sharing I witnessed amount those children was awe inspiring. The older ones cared for their younger siblings and did without if there was none for them. I watched them help each other find a new pair to fit and give their old pair to a younger child that didn't get any. Much can be learned from these people!
Traditional publishing is very expensive and you have to make 100's or 1000's of copies and deal with sales, distribution, delivery and shipping. So I was not able to go that route at this time, but Blurb.com has provided me a means to make this dream a reality. It comes with a higher price tag, but I can assure you that 100% of the profit I make from all sales of this book will go directly to Washington to help the children.
Think of your book purchase in this way. You get:
- A gorgeous coffee table book full of over 200 of images the scenes and people of Peru, taken by an award winning photographer
- To feel good about helping the very people you see on its pages
- A tool for gratitude to remind yourself daily, how much you have when so many in the world have so little – and yet they are happy
- To make my dream come true, and help Washi with his dream of a better Peru for his people. One at a time!
How can you NOT fall in love with these faces?! I did
You CAN make a difference – please help! Buy one or more copies of the book. Give it as a gift for that hard to buy for friend who also likes helping people. Give it as corporate gifts or rewards for staff or clients. Buy it for anyone you know that's ever been to Peru and has been touched by it as I have. Buy as many as you can – and then spread the word to others please.
If you cannot get a book, you can also help by passing along this story and link to this page. Put it on your Facebook wall. Twitter about it. Email it to all your friends and colleagues. In order to make this happen we need to reach as many people as possible. I can only do that with your help.
Thanks for listening.