Kusi Ñan Organic Farm
Kusi Ñan is an Organic Farm project created by the graduates of the Kusi Kawsay Andean School. Following the Kusi Kawsay education, the first graduates (2012) were motivated to revitalize and reclaim their culture by contributing to their community as agents of change. Now in its sixth year, Kusi Ñan serves as a model for Climate Change adaptation and mitigation! The farm is also a community gathering space and provides a beautiful, healthy and safe space to conduct empowering workshops for children, youth and communities.
ABOUT KUSI ÑAN
The Kusi Ñan project of organic agriculture became a source of employment for the alumni and provided a creative solution. Kusi Ñan grows organic healthy, nutritious foods with non-polluting products and thus they provide the school lunch for Kusi Kawsay and the alumni sell their produce. The Kusi Ñan project has allowed the graduates to remain in their community rather than having to migrate to the city for employment. Furthermore, the students are learning ancient Andean ways of farming and sharing these with their peers.
Kusi Ñan’s mission is to be efficient in and support rural agriculture through the wisdom of our ancestral Andean practices, which hold the solutions to ensuring global food security, tackling climate change and ensuring sustainability for a livable future.
About the Land
The land of the Kusi Ñan Farm has been revitalized. The plot belongs to a Pisac family that lives in the city of Cusco. Because they could not tend to their land, it became the local garbage dumping ground. The families agreed that they would significantly lower the rent of land if Kusi Ñan cleaned it up, implemented an irrigation system and maintained the property. The alumni spent the first months cleaning and revitalizing the entire space. The community was so used to tossing their garbage onto this property that it took some time to reverse this behavior. Once the land was cared for, the irrigation system was put into place and the soil was replaced, then the planting began. Using ancient Andean knowledge of agriculture and local seeds, the youth were trained and mentored by farmers of the community, and the growing of nutritious organic food finally took root.
Project and Partnerships
Today Kusi Ñan is a fully flourishing farm serving their nutritious and organic produce to locals and restaurants in Pisac, around the Sacred Valley and in Cusco. The Farm is autonomously ran by youth with mentoring and guidance from the Kusi Kawsay Association.
We are incredibly excited about the growth and potential of Kusi Ñan.
The farm project is supported by EMpower and Enactus Ryerson University.
EMpower / The Emerging Markets Foundation is a global philanthropy focused on at-risk youth in emerging market countries. With a world-wide community of supporters, they strategically invest in vital, local organizations who work to empower youth.
Enactus stands for: ENtrepreneurial—having the perspective to see an opportunity and the talent to create value from that opportunity; ACTion—the willingness to do something and the commitment to see it through even when the outcome is not guaranteed; US—a group of people who see themselves connected in some important way; individuals that are part of a greater whole.
Workshops and Gatherings
Students, former students and the community are beneficiaries of the Kusi Ñan project. They can continue their education and personal growth (learning about business skills, organic agriculture, well-being, yoga, etc.) in different workshops held here. It also serves as a gathering space where one can be part of the celebrations of traditions like “faenas” (community work), where the community shared not only the work but music and local food, celebrating the traditions of the Andes.
Conjunto Tradicional de Música Kusi Ñan
Youth from the farm and former students from the school formed the music group “Conjunto Tradicional de Música Kusi Ñan”. This new generation of youth has taken over the task to celebrate and preserve their cultural identity. They were invited to the Paucar Raymi event in Ecuador, where they met with Ecuador´s Cultural Minister.
Warmikunaq Rimayni (“The voice of the women”) and She´s the First group, facilitate workshops and trainings for girls and the Kusi Kawsay community and friends in order to provide information and open minds so the future generation of women can make decisions in a conscious way. Workshops about gender equality, self-esteem, women´s health practices, nonviolence communication, natural medicine using local plants, healthy nutrition, women´s empowerment among others are held in their facilities.