Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Thank you Coprodeli

Charlie Loverling is an enthusiastic volunteer English teacher from the US who Coprodeli had the honor of hosting at our school Agustin de Hipona in Callao, Peru. 

As Armando and I walked home from dinner, a plane flew overhead. He stopped in his tracks and looked up in awe. "It is my dream to one day fly in a plane," he said in Spanish. He spoke too quickly for me to understand, so I asked him to repeat what he said, "mas despacio." Ever patient, Armando repeated himself, and this time I understood. 

But of course I had no idea what to say. Due to the sheer luck of where I was born, I've had the opportunity to fly on planes dozens of times, to exotic locations all over the world. Armando, on the other hand, has never had the opportunity to travel outside of Peru. Like so many Peruvians, he's a highly smart and motivated person, but, because of where he was born, his opportunities in life are much more limited than mine. 

I've known for a long time that I was born into luckier circumstances than the majority of people in the world, but Armando's comment on our walk home from dinner still hit me hard. It's one thing to be told, or to learn in school how lucky you are, how much harder the rest of the world has it. It's quite another to witness the discrepancy first-hand; to see good, honest people stuck with the shorter end of the stick.



Armando works full-time as the only P.E. teacher at Agustin de Hipona, one of Coprodeli's fantastic schools in Callao where I volunteered teaching English earlier this year. Coprodeli schools pay their teachers well relative to other schools in the area, but it's still not much, especially from my US-skewed perspective. When Armando told me what he and his colleagues made, I was blown away. At the time I was in my third week at Agustin de Hipona, and I had seen first-hand how hard all of the teachers there worked. When they're not in the classroom teaching their hearts out, they're preparing new lessons, or researching new teaching methods, or meeting one-on-one with students to provide extra help, etc. Oftentimes on Monday mornings I would ask the teachers how their weekends were, and I always got roughly the same response: "Very busy working." 



The dedication that these teachers have to their students is profound. They barely make enough money to get by, yet still they work tirelessly and go above and beyond what is required of them on a daily basis. These teachers do this because, to them, the true compensation for their work is not money, but rather the joy they derive from watching their students succeed. To me, that's inspiring. 




There are a ton of people who helped make my short time with Coprodeli so special. Thank you, first and foremost, to Padre Miguel for welcoming me into the Coprodeli family and making this experience possible. Thank you to the Coprodeli administrators - especially Marissa, Olga, Marlith, Roxanna - for always being available to help me with anything I needed (even when I'm sure you had a million other things to do). Thank you Señor Blas for teaching me how to navigate Callao's tricky bus network (no small task). Thank you to my students, whose warmth and energy made me excited to come into school every day. And of course, thank you to all of the teachers and administrators at Agustin de Hipona - especially Maria, Diana, Armando, and Jack - for inspiring me to work hard, help those in need, and be grateful for everything I have.

Until next time,

Charlie Lovering

Monday, April 27, 2015

Letter From Judy McDonald

Judy McDonald is a board member and the mother of Thomas McDonald, the founder of Coprodeli USA. She has been volunteering at Coprodeli Peru almost every year for the past ten years. Below is her letter after her most recent trip.

March 23, 2015

Dear Members of the Coprodeli Board,


Recently I returned from visiting Padre Miguel at Coprodeli, in Callao.  I feel compelled to write and tell you some of my observations and experiences.  I spent almost five weeks with the Coprodeli people, this being my eighth visit to Peru.

Coprodeli Staff
Olga Samborska Moroz and Marissa Joakim are the two women working for Coprodeli USA at the office in Callao.  They welcomed me warmly and I was happy to have the opportunity to help them with some work.  They are like the rest of the staff in Callao…smart, focused, likable, dedicated and diligent.  You can feel comfortable that they are doing well in their positions.  I am not involved in social media, but they are tapping into that territory with a vengeance and they seem to be successful.


This year, more than ever before, I am awed by all that Padre Miguel Ranera ( Padre ) and his dedicated team have accomplished.  The staff perform as a very well organized, dedicated and competent group of people.  They take their lead from Padre, their fearless and extremely focused leader.  It is hard for me to put a handle on it, but this year just seemed different.

Coprodeli San Martin School and Outreach Center, in Pachacutec, Peru
I can give you a few examples.  The schools that were built in Pachacutec and Callao how many years ago have the appearance of well-established centers of education.  The directors and other educators of these schools seem to be extremely capable, focused, knowledgeable, very dedicated and proud of what they are doing.  It was wonderful to see.

 I visited the Coprodeli Outreach Center (CAE) classes in Callao and Independencia. Both of the programs are well established. The students were amazing.  They were having fun, but they were so orderly, polite and engaging that it was absolutely a pleasure to be with them.  There was a sense of calmness, safety and nurturing in the air.  Children were nice to each other.

Outreach Center in Los Barracones, Peru
I spent a morning at the new Coprodeli Outreach Center (CAE) in Los Barracones in Callao, not ten minutes from the Coprodeli office. This is one of the worst areas in the Lima area.  Padre has been asked by city officials to bring his programs to the area and be a factor in turning the area around.  This is a high order, an enormous mission, one which is right up Padre’s alley!  The program here runs during the morning, culminating with a large, healthy lunch and then dismissal.  There were probably 14-16 kids there, mostly boys, and the atmosphere was totally different than the others I had just visited. I admire the staff and as I said before, I cannot imagine dealing with these kids on a daily basis. I was exhausted after the few hours I spent there.  I look forward to returning another year and finding the same calm and order that exists at all of the other CAEs.

Padre Miguel and Judy McDonald on a boat in the Peruvian Jungle
Padre Miguel is very patient with me and takes very good care of me.  When he is out of town someone is assigned to watch over me.  

I will tell you a little bit of what is going on in the jungle…from my eyes.  It appears to me that some of the eight sites are welcoming the Coprodeli “model” of school and its education process.  There is work to be done and people are receptive to the upcoming changes.  There are the actual school buildings that need cleaning and updating, and teachers that need to be observed/approved or replaced. Although it is not an easy area to work in, Padre has totally committed himself and appropriate staff to this region of San Martin, in the jungle.  It was a gift for me to be able to be witness to this new area of improvement and growth for Coprodeli.

Maria Teresa Fernandez, Padre Miguel, and Judy McDonald in the Peruvian Jungle
During different meetings or after some masses, Padre would introduce me, along with other new faces, to the group in attendance.  A full time volunteer from Spain, Gus by nickname (Maria Teresa Fernandez), was usually introduced with me.  She runs all of Coprodeli Spain and among other activities, manages the 500-600 “padrinos” (child sponsors) of Spain.  (We may have close to 150.)  Anyway, at one of these times I gave my little talk, in Spanish, and mentioned the following.  “There are always two things that are sure to happen when I spend a day with Padre.  There is always an adventure and there is always a miracle!”  And, it is true.

Judy McDonald in Coprodeli office in Callao, Peru
Please feel free to ask me any details or questions about my trip.  I welcome the opportunity of writing more about my time with Padre in Perú.
I look forward to my next visit,

Judy McDonald



Friday, June 13, 2014

Junior Achievement at Colegio San Martin: Spotlight on Micolem


What is it?

The Junior Achievement Program, or “La Compañia” as it’s known in Peru, allows high school students to embark on business endeavors and get first-hand experience in what it is like running a business. During the program, students build and execute micro-companies - from business plan to production to liquidation - learning a range of skills such as planning, operations, marketing, management, and strategic analysis. The goal is to have the students contribute to and engage their communities. 

The team

The team from Coprodeli’s San Martin School in Pachacutec wanted to capitalize on a culturally important, artistic market opportunity: Marginalized Peruvian communities highly value traditional paintings, but originals and framing are often out of their price range. The students collaborated with a local artist and bought printings of his original canvas paintings and then built their own wooden frames to mount the paintings on. 


The team splits up and sells these pieces throughout various markets in Pachacutec and Lima as well as other events such as at school celebrations or in their communities.
 
Their goals

The goal of this year’s class was to sell enough paintings to fund a group graduation trip to Cusco - an opportunity inaccessible to the majority of marginalized community members. They sold each mounted painting for 10 Soles (approximately $4) but only profited half of that due to cost of materials for the frames. They calculated that they would need to sell 800 paintings a person in order to make their dream come true. We wish them all the best of luck as they continue working hard to reach their goal!
 
Check out photos of the Micolem team and their products!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Coprodeli USA Celebrates 15 Years!


Coprodeli USA Celebrates Its 15th Anniversary - Today! 

On when & why Coprodeli USA was founded
Coprodeli USA was established as a nonprofit organization on May 5, 1999 by Thomas McDonald after he spent five months working with children in Callao, Peru. He was inspired by Padre Miguel's passion for working toward a more just Peru so he started the USA branch of the organization to provide additional support to the extensive Peru programs.  

On how we've evolved over the years
Originating in Chicago, Coprodeli USA began as a group of dedicated volunteers - friends of Thomas - that were passionate about our mission. The passion never subsided as we evolved to become more strategic. 

Over time, Coprodeli USA grew from dedicated volunteers, to an organized board, to various full time staff members and a robust intern program. We grew our programs and support from receiving in-kind donations and financial support, to holding many events and volunteer trips, to child sponsorships and building strategic partnerships. Over time, we grew to have Coprodeli hotspots in Chicago, DC, and we now have supporters, staff, and long-term volunteers in both the U.S. and Peru! We are continually working to expand the Coprodeli network and reach out to more people and organizations interested in our mission.

On Coprodeli USA's successes & our incredible support network
Coprodeli USA's success in contributing to the sustainable development of many Peruvian communities in the past 15 years is undeniable - we have secured various financial donors, humanitarian aid collaborators, and wonderful volunteers that have led to a range of strategic projects, programs, and initiatives throughout the years.

We'd like to thank all of our dedicated supporters, both old and new alike, for your incredible dedication, shared passion, and understanding in the importance of enabling holistic and sustainable programs and services in Peru that improve the lives of those in impoverished communities. It is because of your support that Coprodeli USA has been able to provide such strategic and rich support for Coprodeli Peru's programs throughout the past 15 years, and we hope we can continue to build on our past successes to provide even greater, more strategic support moving forward.  


Thank you for all of your support - be it through volunteering, giving financially, attending our events, sponsoring a child, or donating to our cause otherwise. We hope to have you as part of the Coprodeli family well into the future!


Let's take a trip down memory lane!
                                                         A flashback to the first Coprodeli USA gathering in Chicago.

As we reflect over the last 15 years, we asked our long-time supporters and board members to share some of their favorite Coprodeli USA memories. One of our board members, Marty Kenahan, shared a few of hers. 

Our favorite? An eye-opening memory of a trip to Peru in 2005. Marty was organizing the first intern class in Peru  when she decided to make a t-shirt quilt for Padre Miguel and Coprodeli. While in the process of collecting shirts with various Coprodeli designs and logos, Marty came across a man in Pachacutec with a Coprodeli shirt that they had not seen before. 

"I told him about the shirt collection for the quilt and he immediately took the shirt off and gave it to me.  I was so touched by the fact that someone living in a shantytown with so few resources was such a great admirer of Padre Miguel that he would literally give the shirt off his back to show his appreciation."


Another favorite memory is from the summer of 2004 when a group of Coprodeli supporters from South America, North America and Europe all got together to walk 150 kilometers as part of Spain's Camino de Santiago. They trekked through various terrain and climates but learned a great deal from the journey by sharing it with pilgrims from all over the world. The group was able to raise $80,000 in Coprodeli's name through donations based on the number of miles they walked.



"Padre Miguel taught us a great deal about the history of the old pilgrimage tradition which involved prayer, suffering and almsgiving. We prayed together at a 600 year old Benedictine monastery where we spent one night with the monks who prayed throughout the day and night." 
Thank you, Marty, for sharing your wonderful memories with us! 
Do you have any favorite Coprodeli USA memories? Share them with us on Facebook or Twitter.


Learn more about Coprodeli USA's projects and strategic partners over the past 15 years, and how you can contribute to our impact by giving your time, talent, or treasure.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Altar'd State Joins the Coprodeli Family!


We are excited to announce our new partnership with Altar'd State and welcome them into the Coprodeli family! 

Altar'd State is a quickly-growing American women’s fashion retailer that is motivated by social causes and is dedicated to giving back to others. CEO, Chairman and Founder of Altar’d State, Aaron Walters, was serendipitously connected with Coprodeli through a common partnership with TOMS. He embarked on a one-week Giving Trip to Peru in August 2013 where he spent the week traveling to different Coprodeli sites and visiting our various programs on-the-ground.  

Aaron was soon inspired and sold on the Coprodeli model for sustainable social change. He felt particularly impacted by the Cañete Social Center which at the time only consisted of an elementary school. The community members he interacted with were working hard to get ahead in life but were limited because of their resources and the very nature of living in extreme poverty. Before leaving the site, Aaron reassured the community that everything would work out in the end. Little did they know, he was speaking of the completion of the community’s Coprodeli Social Center.

Aaron Walters and fellow TOMS trip particpant learn Festejo, the typical dance of Southern Peru, with the Cañete students.

Upon his return to the United States, Aaron stayed in touch with Coprodeli USA and we began to develop a strategic partnership. Through this new partnership, Altar’d State is generously funding the Cañete Social Center Project, a $212,565 initiative which will provide for a high school, a humanitarian aid storage center and a chapel to benefit 2,170 individuals in the Cañete community

Before this addition, Coprodeli in Cañete only had an elementary school, meaning that older children would have to change schools to a distanced public high school or begin working at 13 years old. As a result of this project, children in Cañete will now have the opportunity to continue their studies, receive a high-quality education and graduate from a Coprodeli high school. Coprodeli has broken ground on the construction project this week, with plans to complete the Cañete Social Center by December 2015.


Nelly, the lead Humanitarian Aid Coordinator in the Cañete region, shows us the area for the new expansion of the Center. Straight ahead is where the housing development will be constructed.



A view of the construction site as it is prepared to begin construction. The wooden structures serve as the temporary humanitarian aid storage center. The Elementary School is the sturdy building in the upper right corner.

Additionally, Altar’d State stores and associates currently sponsor 62 children in our Pachacutec schools and outreach centers. Sponsoring a Coprodeli child enables the high-risk children to have access to the support, education, psychologists, and nutrition they need. The basic yet very critical support provided by the sponsors allows the children to focus their energy on their education and future goals rather than worrying about meals or clothing. The Altar'd State associates are already lbecoming even more involved in their sponsored children's lives, seeking out opportunities to further exchange through videos, gifts, and Skype sessions.

Aaron Walters and fellow TOMS Trip participants at Coprodeli's San Luis de Cañete Elementary School in August 2013.

Thank you, Altar'd State! We look forward to a long and engaging relationship!

Learn more about embarking on a strategic partnership with Coprodeli or participating in a short-term volunteer trip to Peru. 

If you'd like to learn more about our incredible new partner, check out the Altar'd State website.



Thursday, August 23, 2012

We are #1!!

CONGRATULATIONS TO COPRODELI SCHOOLS for High Marks in Education! 

The Regional Director of Education in Callao, Dr. Victor Manuel Portilla recognized our schools: Agustín de Hipona and San Francisco Solano for high scores in Mathematics and Reading Comprehension.

San Francisco Solano School placed 3rd in Mathematics in the entire Region Callao (population 800,000) among both private and public schools.



Agustín de Hipona earned a Double-Merited award for TOP #1 performance in Mathematics and Reading Comprehension in the entire Region Callao.


All Coprodeli schools in Callao placed above the national average. 
How have we created leading schools in the most difficult areas of the country?
- We work as a network of 16 schools sharing best practices and resources to educate 4,000 students
- Dedicated professionals - teachers, directors - and parents
- Extended school day from 730 am to 5 pm - keeping children off the streets and developing extra skills
- Values are at the core of our curriculum

Pablo Huacho, Roxana Cancino, Carmen Suarez (Dir. San Francisco Solano), Marivel Sandoval (Dir. Agustin de Hipona) and Padre Miguel Ranera

San Agustin de Hipona School with Double Merit Award for First in Mathematics and Reading Comprehension!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Coprodeli goes to the Jungle of San Martin!


Coprodeli is working promote local development and social equality, strengthening participation of local communities of Bellavista Province, San Martin Region, Peru. The intervention will promote peace and prevent social conflict through activities that provide opportunity for populations to cover basic and agricultural needs and manage social conflict.  Check out Coprodeli in the jungle of San Martin! 

Components of the Intervention Include:
Agricultural School and Group Home – Currently offers a technical and academic education to 100 students while simultaneously teaching values with respect to management of economic, social, personal and political spheres.  The Group Home attends to 25 girls of farming families in the region who otherwise could not access education due to their remote location in the jungle.
Business Incubator - Will work with small agricultural businesses to improve business management and administration.  Services provided will be carried out through trainings that teach business plan development, target markets, and local economy.
Social Infrastructure Program– Will potentiate the role of local government and organizations through the design of public infrastructure projects that optimize public funding sources to improve access to underprivileged communities and excluded groups: women, minorities, etc. 









 


Welcome Back to Our Blog!


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Great experience!

Hola! My name is Rebecca Novick and I am an intern at Coprodeli USA. I am currently pursuing a Master's degree in Ethics, Peace and Global Affairs at American University.

Living in Central America on and off has exposed me to the challenges developing countries face and helped open my eyes to the need that exists. At Coprodeli I have been able to utilize my firsthand knowledge of developing Latin American countries and apply it to the grant writing I do here. I have learned a lot about the process of grant writing as well as the dire condition of the poor and marginalized in Peru. The urban marginalized face unique challenges in terms of breaking the cycle of poverty and Coprodeli does a great job at addressing them. Through writing grants and reviewing organization materials I have learned about the innovative strategies Coprodeli employs in its fight to end poverty. I have also been able to learn more about specific international development issues aligned with my personal interests, such as economic and microbusiness development.

Working with such dedicated staff and interns has been a fantastic experience and I am grateful for the opportunity to meet such passionate people. This internship has helped me learn a lot about international development, poverty issues and non-profit work and will definitely contribute both to my academic and professional future.

-Rebecca

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Join us for a Holiday Harvest!

Join us for Citizen Effect’s Holiday Harvest!

We want to share the good news and let you know that we are part of “Citizen Effect’s Holiday Harvest” this season! We want to invite you to participate in a more rewarding gift experience these holidays by helping put food on the table of the families we serve and that you have helped us support all year long.

Here is what you can do to get involved:

· Go to http://citizeneffect.org/holidayharvest to check out the projects and make a contribution to feed families in our community.

· Visit the website to get personalized holiday cards for friends and loved ones. A portion of your purchase will benefit our project!

Friday, December 3, 2010

My experience at COPRODELI


My name is Milagros, and I am a graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the Universidad San Antonio Abad del Cusco - Peru. I have completed a three month internship as a Translator with COPRODELI USA at their VA/DC office.

While growing up in Cusco, Peru, I gained a unique view of the issues that Peru faces. However, I also gained an education which focused on economics and business. Now, as a settled resident in America, I have furthered my education by taking courses that have focused on English as a second language. Moreover, Coprodeli gave me the opportunity to bring my skills and knowledge together translating different assignments (Spanish to English or English to Spanish) for Coprodeli’s projects. The aspect of my internship that really helped shape my experience was the great staff. They were incredibly receptive to any questions and concerns that I raised, and gave me the opportunity to voice my opinions in an open environment. I couldn’t have asked for more welcoming and passionate co-workers and fellow interns. The smaller working environment provided a great opportunity to learn from one another, collaborate and share in our experiences.
I am incredibly pleased with my internship experience. My internship provided me the opportunity to learn more about the development work that Coprodeli does in Peru, help my fellow paisanos (countrymen), and improve my English.

Milagros Fusari



Monday, November 29, 2010

A Rewarding Experience



Hi!

My name is Jodi Chan and I’m currently an intern for COPRODELI at the VA/DC office. I’m a first year graduate student in the International Development Studies Program at The Elliott School. I’m originally from the Bay Area in California and just moved to the DC area in August 2010.

My experience as an intern at COPRODELI has been extremely valuable and enjoyable. In addition to learning about the processes of implementing projects and grantwriting, the best part about the internship is working with other individuals who are passionate about what they do and making a difference in people’s lives. At COPRODELI I was able to learn a lot about development work in Peru and at the same time have a lot of fun working with other interns and staff who are very dedicated to helping communities living in poverty. Forming friendships and having a real impact on people’s lives are two aspects that I have found extremely rewarding. Furthermore, I was able to work on projects that focused on issues that I am particularly interested in, such as at-risk children and youth. As an international development studies major, I learned many new skills that I’m sure I will utilize later on in my career. Additionally, my experience at COPRODELI has contributed to my coursework at school because I am able to bring additional insights to discussions about international development.

I also really enjoyed attending COPRODELI events. On one occasion, I attended a photo gallery exhibit at the Embassy of Peru showcasing the work of photographer Christopher Kleihege. That event was a lot of fun and I plan to attend more COPRODELI events in the future!



Friday, November 19, 2010

Thank You Coprodeli

My experience at Coprodeli USA has been nothing like I would have expected it to be. Honestly I didn’t know much about what to expect when I applied for this internship. I figured it would be a lot like my past experiences with non profit work – I would be the only one in the office having any idea of what the actual work in my job description entailed.


I was mistaken, however. And gratefully so.


From the day I stepped into the office I was put to work. The work involved some papers, but I definitely wasn’t just pushing them. I was immediately given the Events Manual and flash drive to get myself better acquainted with the position and transfer all past work to my laptop. I was definitely a little overwhelmed at first but was glad to know I would be doing actual work while being able to apply many of the things I had been learning in class.


The more time I spent at Coprodeli the more I realized how happy I was to have this experience. Not only was I learning new things everyday, but I was working for an awesome organization. I got to see how much Coprodeli actually does for the communities they serve in Peru. The things the organization claimed to stand for were an everyday part of life in the office. Everything I, and the people around me, were doing had measurable results and the potential benefits to the organization could be seen. I was even more amazed to see the amount of work being accomplished with the very limited resources we were provided with.


My time at Coprodeli has definitely been more than 'résumé-building'. When I step into the office I feel as though I’m among friends… not just supervisors and fellow interns. Everything from the organization’s openness to new ideas – yes, even from interns – down to the time when the President of our Board of Directors met us for dinner just to stay in touch and get to know the new interns a little better.


I can only hope that when I start my actual career next Fall the organization will be something similar to Coprodeli. My number one goal in life has always been to make a difference in some way but thought that was only a reality for the very lucky… or very rich. Coprodeli has showed me that my goal is within reach. If I play my cards right I may even be able to start an organization that helps me reach it, always remembering my experience at Coprodeli.


- Rianna Felder, Fall Intern 2010

Monday, November 8, 2010

We have some great events to wrap up the year--please join us, and invite your friends along for the fun!

  • Thursday, December 2nd, 6 - 9pm, at Simone's Bar, 960 West 18th Street in Pilsen. Join us for appetizers and craft beer, but more importantly: support the local artists that support Coprodeli. 5 artists will showcase and sell unique items (GREAT GIFT IDEAS), proceeds will benefit Coprodeli. More details coming soon.
  • Friday, December 3rd - Holiday Stroll in Riverside. This is a town-wide event with many businesses participating with special festive activities (open houses, popcorn, face painting, cookies, hot chocolate). Santa visits the town center to kick off the event on a fire truck, and there is the ceremonial lighting of the Christmas tree. Coprodeli will have available Peruvian crafts and jewelry (GREAT GIFT IDEAS!) alongside other sustainable vendors at 39 E. Quincy Street. See you there!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

a couple pictures: check out more on our Facebook Page





Celebracion de Coprodeli-- a perspective of our intern

If there is a recipe for a great evening, Coprodeli seems to have struck on it. The secret ingredient? One great cause.

Celebración de Coprodeli, the 10th annual, is not the typical fare for a college student like myself. Walking up to the Blackstone Hotel, I really didn't know what to expect. Having worked on the Celebración event all summer as an intern for Coprodeli, I was both excited and nervous to see the final product. What had I forgotten to do? What if that great idea had turned out horrible in practice? What does one even wear to a gala?

Of course, in true Coprodeli fashion, everyone was welcoming, energetic and excited from the moment I walked in the door. That same energy that sustains the organization was truly evident that night, and as the first guests came in the door at 6pm, all the details that I had been stressing about turned out not to matter at all. People were here to have fun, spend some time with other philanthropically-minded people, and support the amazing cause of Coprodeli education programs. In the midst of that overwhelming spirit, it couldn't have mattered if a table tent or two was missing, or a display was misplaced. (Happily, all the details came off smoothly!) But I think there was a bigger lesson involved in this event. It's easy to wrap oneself up in the minutiae of a project, at the expense of the bigger picture. Celebración, in its actualization, allowed me to see with clarity the greater goal at hand - through the Padrinos and the Mission Drive - of helping secure a brighter future for Peru.

The layout of the program or the font of a brochure no longer mattered. What mattered was the spirit of altruism, in no place more evident than in Padre Ranera's speech on Coprodeli successes in education. The heartwarming sincerity of the speech meant for me that motivation and inspiration far and away outstripped worries over caterers and A/V equipment. It was, to say the least, a pleasant revelation.

The spirit at the event was infectious. Even I, fresh from 3 months of learning the ins and outs of Coprodeli, was reminded of our true purpose. I know that I - and I think I speak for everyone else at Celebración, supporters new and old - felt connected more closely to Coprodeli as an organization, and to Coprodeli as a dream, a goal, a success, and an inspiration.

Thanks, Coprodeli, for an inspiring summer! See you in Peru sometime!

-Erin Britton, Summer Intern 2010