Sunday, January 01, 2012

Puerto Ocopa Orphange

Puerto Ocopa Orphanage
The village of Puerto Ocopa is located over the Andes Mountain about 300 miles from Lima. We discovered this remote village in 2004 during a bicycle tour to the end of the eastern most road in central Peru. At the end of the road is the Puerto Ocopa Orphanage. It is a home and boarding school for 45 to 85 kids who live in the wild jungle between Peru and Brazil. During our first tour we saw that the conditions in Puerto Ocopa were very basic. In the following years we have organized many tours to bring supplies to the orphanage.

This year we hired a mini van to make the two-day drive over the mountains to the town of Satipo. There one of the nuns from the orphanage and three of the kids met us. They would help us do the bulk of the shopping for food and clothing before making the final 50-mile drive to Puerto Ocopa. We were able to buy about 2,000 pounds of rice, sugar, beans and cooking supplies. The nuns estimated we bought enough food to feed the kids for 2 months.

Traveling the final 50 miles to Puerto Ocopa is always an adventure. Fortunately the terrible mud road from past years is now half paved and road crews are constantly grading the rough gravel sections. The driving time has been reduced from three hours to less than two hours.

We made the deliveries to Puerto Ocopa by early afternoon. All the kids lined up and received their new set of clothes and sandals. We stayed and ate lunch with the kids and had a tour of the buildings. The conditions are improving thanks to several organizations from Germany, Spain and France. It is nice more organizations are helping in this remote part of the world. In past years we donated 15 bunk beds that are now being used in a new building. The people in Puerto Ocopa always appreciate the support we give.



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