Recent News from Matignon High School

Matignon Peru Solidarity Trip

May 7, 2019

 

By Diana Matarazzo '19


Over April Break, a combined group of 30 students and teachers including myself traveled to Peru on a solidarity trip. The flight was long and bumpy, but what lied waiting for us some 3800 miles from home was worth any turbulence we had encountered. As soon as we touched down in the Lima airport, we were thrust into the busy, bustling, and beautiful country of Peru. Throughout the course of the trip, we stayed in two Peruvian cities: Lima and Cuzco, which, despite being in the same country, are very different from each other. Lima somewhat resembles New York City in its size and the many parks (such as la Parque de Amor) dispersed throughout the city, however, what stood out to me the most about Lima was the extreme poverty bordering the city. An hour away from our hotel in the beautiful Miraflores district of Lima is a school called Corazon de Jesus. Surrounding this school is a town dirt road, brick factories, and houses made of scrap materials with mototaxis and stray dogs darting out and in of side streets. After spending most of the day with the kids and adults of the school, it was heartwarming to think that those hours made a difference in the students lives.

 

The fifth and sixth days of the trip were by far my favorite. On the fifth day of our trip abroad, we visited one of the seven wonders of the world: Machu Picchu. After 5 hours of travel by train and bus, we made it to the top of the mountain and were witness to ancient Incan ruins. We could feel the energy in the air as we toured around the temples and squares of the ancient city. They day after, we visited with the Amaru Community, which graciously welcomed our group and taught us farming and spinning techniques in addition to cooking us a Peruvian lunch. Throughout the whole day we spent with them, we were fully-dressed in their clothing which included hats, skirts, and ponchos. At first, I thought it was silly, but as the day went on, I became more appreciative of the different lifestyle that was presented to me.

 

My time in Peru was an enlightening experience and I am extremely grateful to have had this opportunity. I have a newfound love for travel and hope to have another opportunity to go on a trip like this in my future. In short, Peru was amazing; words cannot even begin to describe how life-changing and powerful this trip was, I truly had the time of my life whilst making a difference in others.

 

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