Winter is Coming...
Technically July in Piura is the middle of the winter as it is in the southern hemisphere. However, as the city we will be travelling to lies only 360 miles from the equator and average daily temperatures are in the 70’s and 80’s, it is a far cry from winter in Ohio. It should be quite a pleasant change from the sweltering heat here in Glendale.
A Journey of 3,376 Miles Begins With a Single Step
Our warmly anticipated trip begins in five days but our preparations have been underway for quite some time. Piura TEM Lab group 1 arrived safely back to Glendale with nothing but good things to say about the people, culture, and food (when they weren’t getting sick from it). However, hearing that the apartment where they stayed, which is also where we will tentatively be staying, is most inauspiciously located directly in between a rock music rehearsal studio often frequented by musicians of questionable ability and a veterinary clinic full of boisterous dogs with sensitive ears was a bit disconcerting for us light sleepers. We have been reassured though that the progress of finding a new apartment outside of the Bermuda Triangle of sound for us to stay can be best described as ‘fluid’. This was our first indication that, yes, we are in fact going to be travelling to an emerging market.
Building on a Solid Foundation
Having been passed on the proverbial baton from team one, the knowledge and resources they transferred to us through rapid downloads (digitally and cerebrally) inform our plans to continue their ‘Train the Trainers’ approach to empowering and educating locals to create effective business plans that can be used as tools to help their businesses grow through government development initiatives (Procompite). We plan to scale and hone their approach, applying it to some of the more remote provinces in the Piura region, with effectiveness and sustainability in mind as performance indicators. We are also exploring our own approaches to stimulating economic development in our target industries of fishing and agriculture. Our success in Piura will be highly contingent on our ability to nurture and cultivate the relationship seeds that team 1 did such a tremendous job of planting.
Let's Not Get Ahead of Ourselves...
With a 5.6% uninterrupted average annual GDP growth rate over the past 14 years, skilled people with high academic standards, and implementation of treaties with the world’s primary economies, it is an exciting time to be in Peru and contribute to its further development. It is easy to get caught up with eager anticipation of our forthcoming adventure. It took a phone call from my mom in which she asked the humbling question “do you have your passport?”, to bring me back down to earth. (Piura TEM Lab team 2 from left to right: Barbara Noseda, Ted Summers, Anastasiya Shaposhnik, Malorie Jones)