Indigenous Roots Not Forgotten

The Story of Mariano
February 27, 2019 - Peru

Mariano today, smiling at NPH.

Peru is a country filled with great diversity. And NPH is no stranger to it, for we have a variety of ethnic roots and origins within our walls. One such member of our family is Mariano*, a 21-year-old young man who came to NPH five years ago.

Mariano currently studies nursing. He says he likes his career very much, because he helps a lot of people and one day wants to work in a clinic. Mariano shares more about his life and heritage.

In the Amazonas region, near the northeast of the country, lives the Yutupis population. This is one of the 26 native communities that are part of the Tuntanain Communal Reserve. It is inhabited by a majority Aguaruna people, and is the ethnic group to which our beloved Mariano belongs.

When we ask him about his homeland, he affectionately calls back many memories of his family and his childhood. Many of his family members still live there today. However, he is not the only Aguaruna who is now living at NPH. An older brother, already graduated, lived with us as well.

Mariano shares that his life is very different from the life of his parents and ancestors. Many native communities farm and gather enough food for consumption, a traditional and sustainable practice carried out for years.

Nowadays, life has taken him through different paths, and he is grateful for everything he has learned. He knows his path is difficult, and that he is on a journey different from many who he grew up with. He is not the only Aguaruna who has migrated to another region of the country, and he does not want to give up. Mariano hopes to follow his dreams, find a job, and build a family of his own.

*Names are changed to protection children's privacy.

Diego Falcón   
Communications Officer

You may be only one person in the world, but you may be all the world to one child.
—Fr. William Wasson




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