Lima, Peru – Together with partners, beneficiaries and volunteers, Cuso International officially launched its Volunteers for International Cooperation and Empowerment (VOICE) program in Peru on October 14, 2015.

The Canadian Ambassador-designate to the Republic of Peru, Gwyneth Kutz, Cuso International board member, Walter Blake, and Cuso International Country Representative in Peru, Lieven Pype, spoke at the launch, which included the presentation of a new video about the organization’s work.

Ambassador-designate Kutz highlighted Cuso International’s contribution to poverty reduction in Peru, namely by introducing innovative employment and entrepreneurship initiatives for poor and marginalized youth. “Canadian volunteers are Canada’s ambassadors and reflect the best of our values,” she said.  

In Peru, where inequality has been growing increasingly, Cuso International will deliver effective, focused and accountable programming through VOICE to improve lives and empower communities in Lima, Cusco and San Martin. Highly skilled volunteers and local partners will work together on specific projects designed to contribute to education, skills training and the prevention of gender-based violence. This will, in turn, improve employability, provide support and training to entrepreneurs, increase enterprise development and financing opportunities, promote sustainable urban agriculture and support inclusive value chains for small-scale cocoa, medicinal plants and guinea pig producers.

“We are committed to continually drawing from our experience, sharing knowledge and applying it to improve our work,” said Cuso International Board Member Walter Blake. “Our new monitoring and evaluation framework will allow us to continue to build on past successes.”

As Cuso International’s primary international program, VOICE will improve the economic and social well-being of poor and marginalized communities in targeted countries across Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.

VOICE contributes to Canada’s commitment to promoting sustainable economic growth, access to health services, and gender equality and social inclusion around the globe. The five-year program is made possible by a generous $65 million contribution from the Government of Canada through the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD).

Cuso International is a non-profit international development organization that works to improve the lives of people living with poverty and inequality around the globe. Each year we mobilize hundreds of volunteer professionals who work with local partners to create positive lasting change. Established in 1961, Cuso International is a registered charity in Canada and the United States.

Jennifer Buter, Communications Officer
613.829.7445 x244