Considering that Kusi Ñan began in July 2013, and ran out of start-up funds in November 2013 (they have been working since then with no salary), these advances are impressive. These first graduates of Kusi Kawsay rented an amazing piece of farmland ideally located on the outskirts of Pisac at the base of the school property which they secured and cleaned. Next, they fixed up an existing room for a caretaker /office space, built a shed to store tools, and an area equipped to wash and package the produce. They also built a rustic outhouse, established compost, prepared the soil and planted a permaculture garden full of organic vegetables, salad greens & herbs, as well as Andean products such as corn, chia and quinoa. All the while they remained true to their ancestral agrarian heritage, values and practices.
Through the process these young people have also felt their lack of organization, lack of business skills, and at times, lack of drive, especially once the start-up funds ran out.
There are some exciting ideas envisioned for the near future that will generate more income by using products sourced from our indigenous cultural network.
Kusi Ñan, as a micro business, social venture, and entrepreneurial project, has the goal to provide dignified work for youth who honour and promote their ancestral heritage, as well as the intent to help sustain Kusi Kawsay in the future.