Located in the central Peruvian Amazon, the Yanesha people were given land by the government in 1988 causing this previously nomadic, hunter-gatherer people group to settle in over 40 rural communities. This settlement meant learning to farm and create sustainable food sources within these lands, something previously unknown to them. Their lands are rich and fertile giving life to many crops including cocoa, bananas, papaya, corn, and others. Fish farming has also become a sustainable meat source in many communities.
However, these communities are connected to the rest of Peru only by miles of curvy, often poorly maintained dirt roads leaving them isolated from consumer markets. Many crops are consumed and traded among their communities with little opportunity for income. And they are still learning what it means to live off the land in one area.
In addition to agricultural needs, the spiritual needs are great. Reached by Wycliffe missionaries in the 60s, the spiritual awakening experienced by that generation has faded and the Yanesha churches are small and elderly. This small team has begun work in the areas of training young church leaders, youth outreach, and community development, but we need more skilled team members to join!
This team lives several hours from "Yanesha land" in a jungle city and travels there a couple times a month. Team members in this position will join our community development efforts using their agricultural skills to come alongside local farmers to better their farming practices, help get their products to markets, and in micro-enterprise endeavors all while developing relationships and discipling the Yanesha in their walk with Christ. When we are not traveling to the Yanesha area, we have the opportunity to support local farmers, get involved in a local church and teach at a local Christian school.
· Come alongside and learn from the Yanesha, adapting best practices to the environment and to their needs
· Build relationships with local farmers and encourage them in their walk with Christ
· Build network between local farmers and local markets
· Develop and/or work with local cooperative
· Assist in administrative details related to ministry as needed
· Study Spanish full-time for the first 6-12 months or have a high level of fluency