A Day in the Life of a Chica Dinámica

gswRecent Stories0 Comments

A typical day for GSW Project Managers always involves carrying large bags of sports equipment via Cusco’s public transportation. As females donning athletic wear and bags of bats, balls, and jerseys, we always draw attention from locals and tourists alike while making our way from school to school.

Jessie carrying one of our big bag sports equipment and waiting at the bus stop. Friday is our busiest day when we teach at 3 different schools throughout Cusco and have to take 4 different buses.

This past week at all of our schools we have been working on a unit of baseball, a relatively uncommon sport in Peru that is quickly becoming a favorite among our students. While passing through a neighborhood square to arrive to sports class at Santoni, a tourist from Canada was surprised to see us carrying bats, bases, and baseballs. From his interest he approached us and asked, “What sort of project are you doing in Peru that involves baseball?”  “We are a group that teaches life skills to girls through sports. It’s an important mission, and we are really enjoying the work and our girls have so much fun during our classes,” we explained.

Santoni girls ready to play some baseball!

He responded, “Wow, I didn’t know the kids here had time for fun.” His response is one we will never forget because in many ways it is true. As we spend more time with our students and build stronger relationships with these young women we learn more about their home lives and the personal responsibilities that they each have. The more we learn, the more we are impressed.

Luz Marioli from Santoni steps up to bat.

He responded, “Wow, I didn’t know the kids here had time for fun.” His response is one we will never forget because in many ways it is true. As we spend more time with our students and build stronger relationships with these young women we learn more about their home lives and the personal responsibilities that they each have. The more we learn, the more we are impressed.

Diana, a fourth grader from Santoni, is new to Chicas Dinamicas and never misses a class.

For Ivonne, a fifth grader from Santoni, her weekends often consist of waking up early to do the laundry, helping her mom sell chicken at the market all day, and completing her homework and studies for the school week to come. For many of our students at Pacca, a rural school located an hour outside of Cusco, a typical day consists of rising at 4 am to start helping their parents with work on the farm. The young mothers of Casa Mantay are of course just as busy as they are simultaneously working jobs, attending school, and caring for their children— an incredible amount of responsibility for someone who is only 16 years old.

Virgen del Rosario students listen intently for instructions from Jessie during their new favorite game of “Simon Says” (Simon Dice)

Indeed, these girls are busy with school work, family duties, etc., but it is for these reasons that GSW has such an important role for these young women. Classes with Chicas Dinámicas allow girls to practice sport without fear of judgment, develop critical thinking and communication skills, and learn the value of teamwork. Overall, our classes create a safe space for young women to learn skills outside of their traditional roles that will empower them as they develop emotionally and professionally.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *