Nancy Ferradas, Microsoft Peru
Paz y Esperanza (Peace and Hope) is a nonprofit in Peru that operates in eight locations around the country, including Ayacucho, Lima, San Juan de Lurigancho, San Martin, Huanuco and Apurimac, to provide support and assistance to girls facing difficult domestic conditions, including giving them access to technology skills to help them continue their education and find employment.
They do incredible work. For example, in the region of Huanuco, 80% of the population lives in poverty. Every year, 4,700 cases of domestic violence are reported – 75% of victims are young women – although a great many cases are not reported due to fear of retaliation. Paz y Esperanza’s Casa del Buen Trato Hovde house fosters girls that have been victims of physical or psychological abuse at their own homes. Many of the girls look for shelter after leaving school or their families, and find in Hovde Foster House an opportunity to continue studying and start healing.
Paz y Esperanza is using donated technology, including Microsoft Office, SQL Server, and Windows Server to gives these girls the opportunity to develop computer skills and get ready for a job, awakening their optimism and enthusiasm for learning again. Some of the girls have never used a computer before, so they discover a way to connect with the world and to access information, resources and job tools.
“Microsoft´s software donation is making it possible for girls and women from Huanuco´s Casa del Buen Trato to find new opportunities through technology, allowing them to build a future of hope and teach others what they have learned,” said Claudia García from the Huanuco office of Peace and Hope.
“After facing a difficult family situation, I was welcomed at Casa del Buen Trato Hovde. Not only did they give me hope, but they helped me to achieve my dreams. They have a Computer Center and I was able to learn about technology day by day. Thanks to that technology and my teachers from Casa del Buen Trato, I successfully ended my Executive Secretary & Computer Studies with good grades, and I improved my computer skills. Now I have the opportunity to get a better job and keep studying,” said one 16-year old girl served by Casa del Buen Trato Hovde.
Paz y Esperanza now has many former students working as office assistants or who have started their own businesses, contributing to the local economy and social welfare in Huanuco, and showing the community that women have the potential to transform their lives.
“Access to Microsoft´s software donation program has been very important and useful for Peace and Hope because the new software is allowing us to improve our IT system´s stability and performance in all our offices, and also is letting us strengthen the services we give to communities in need”, said Germán Vargas, Director of Peace and Hope National Office.
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Microsoft has a global software donations program that brings the benefits of affordable software to nonprofits around the world. Does your favorite nonprofit know about the program? Find out more here.