Project information

Children's Home set in a Permaculture Environment

Create a Children’s home in a Sustainable Environment; provide Love; a Healthy&Ecological home for up to 35 orphaned children from the highlands of Peru.Integrate & work with the local community, always respecting their culture. Develop & encourage the children to be active members in the community.

It is a project of a lifetime

Charity information: Living Heart

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  • Need


    In the remote Peruvian Andes, the majority of children& adolescents are seriously malnourished, abused & neglected by their families caused by extreme poverty, insufficient state policies & resources to remedy the precarious situation of this vulnerable population.In recent years, reports of sexual abuse of both boys and girls have increased.Often the aggressor is a family member.Most pregnancies between the ages of 11 and 14 are from incest or rape. Many mothers of all ages die in childbirth


    By providing a healthy, ecological and self-sustaining home for vulnerable children; providing them with protection and fulfilling their emotional, intellectual and social needs using a family approach; offering them guidance & opportunities to help them build their own future and fulfil their own dreams. Using our experience we will provide an holistic approach for the neighbouring community working with them & supporting them with improved Nutrition, Health, Education, and sustainable living.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Build a Home for orphaned and vulnerable children in an ecological & self-sufficient environment


    » Buy/rent/get donated 3ha land in a needy community near Cusco with road access, water, an established school & safe from natural disasters
    » Conduct initial research focusing on the local demographic and living standards of the area, to assess the needs and priorities of the community
    » Develop a construction plan with a permaculture / ecologically sustainable design with a team of international professionals and the local community.
    » Progressive construction starting with organic agriculture, tree planting, water reservoirs,renewable energy & main buildings.Starting small & growing

    What success will look like

    Success will be to complete building of the ecological Home for 35 children and start permaculture within 2 years . Full acceptance of the project by the local community

    Aim 2

    Create a warm, loving and home-like atmosphere with the help of professional heart-centered people


    » Build family homes for 5-7 children (total of 35).Provide halfway houses for older children wishing to stay & learn a trade or continue their studies.
    » Local women will be hired to live with & care for the children in the Home on a long-term basis creating a family feel nurturing and supporting them.
    » Employ local professional people to manage the home, educating the children in social awareness, their cultural identity and increasing self-esteem.
    » Whenever possible, a relationship with the biological family, close or extended, and the community, will be encouraged and maintained.

    What success will look like

    Success will be happy, healthy, socially aware and conscious children, who have dreams and live the values which they have learnt into the Home.

    Aim 3

    Empowering the children in the Home and the wider community using complementary educative workshops.


    » Implement additional and bilingual early interactive learning into the daily lives of the local children based on their individual interests.
    » Build a Community Education Centre with a bilingual library, which will provide a tranquil open learning area for residents & the wider community
    » Offer high quality professional studies for all community adolescents – carpentry, agriculture, electricity, computers, multi-media production, etc.
    » Provide hands-on workshops for children & adults in art, theater, music, dance, permaculture, global studies, different handicrafts, etc.

    What success will look like

    Success will be that all children in the Home perform better than the average at school; all are professionals when leaving the Home. More professionals in the community.

    Aim 4

    Provide health and dental care to the Home and wider community, incorporating traditional healing.


    » Establish small health and dental clinic into the Home, which will provide treatment to the residents and the wider community.
    » Work with international volunteering groups of medics and dentists.
    » Implement and teach locals in natural medicine and holistic healing
    » Provide nutrition and cooking workshops, yoga classes, sports, hygiene, environmental conservation

    What success will look like

    Success will be fewer visits to local clinic; reduced malnutrition and common illnesses; better understanding of natural healing methods

    Aim 5

    Create a completely sustainable and self-sustaining Children’s Home


    » Minimise work, transfer waste into resources, recycle water and energy through permaculture design.
    » Alternative energy (solar, biogas, etc.) and organic agricultural practices will be utilized, the gray water will be recycled.
    » Social Enterprise will be established within the Children’s Home to financially sustain the Project in a real and concrete way.
    » Respect to local and children’s diverse culture, religion and customs. The Home has no specific political or religious affiliations

    What success will look like

    Success will be to develop completely self-sustaining & ecological Children’s Home within 10 years; considerable economical, social & cultural development of the wider community

  • Impact


    Better overall health and education for the local community; social and cultural harmony; restoring of local environment and environmentally conscious residents. Children’s Home residents will be healthy and well-developed, professionals and able to build their own future and create healthy families. They will be change makers and community leaders and will contribute to the development of other needy communities. Success will be demonstrated by monitoring set up sustainability indicators.


    Risk: Lack of financial stability in the initial stage of the project. Strategies: intensive fund raising campaign, starting with organic agriculture and small livestock, sell production to high-end hotels and restaurants in Cusco.
    Risk: Low acceptance by local community. Strategies: participative planning from the very beginning of the project; provide work, better education and health care to the locals, respect local culture


    Through regular newsletters, social media, website, financial reports, providing many visual materials. If donors are interested to visit the Home, they will be provided with this opportunity.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £500,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £100,000 Construction (estimated) Building of 5 ecological family houses, communal room, workshop buildings, administrative building
      £50,000 Permaculture (estimated) Purchase and transportation of plants& animals, greenhouse construction, buildings for animals,water
      £250,000 Running costs years1-5(est.) Salaries, Home administration, children's basic needs & education
      £100,000 running costs years6-10(est.) Costs downsized due to self-sufficiency

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    personal pedges £7,000 Conditional
  • Background


    A highland district community (3800m) in the Southern Peruvian Andes in Cusco, Peru with a population of 2500. Harsh climate and soil conditions and lack of organic agriculture practices; therefore lack of crop diversity (potato is the main crop). Poor quality of education and health services. 28 communities, most in extreme poverty (60%), belong to this district. 80% of the children in primary school age are malnourished, There are many orphaned and abandoned children.


    On first place, orphaned and vulnerable children from remote highland communities in the Cusco region, who will be housed in the Children’s Home. Second, the local population through job creation, life skill workshops, improved education and health services. A total of more than 5000 people.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We operate with integrity, transparency, protection, compassion & love, ensuring that all initiatives are researched, manageable, sustainable, efficient, culturally sensitive & moral. With 5 years experience working in remote Andean communities, Living Heart's staff are recognized experts in the field of humanitarian projects around Cusco & are well respected locally & internationally. Led by Sonia Newhouse,a nutritionist and organic gardener, the NGO has a solid foundation from which to grow.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Sonia Newhouse- President And Founder

    With over 50 years experience in Nutrition, organic gardening & business; 10 years in Peru, Sonia is the project catalyst, networking & fundraising,

    Heather – Director Of Administration

    Raising awareness internationally, fundraiser, coordinating & supporting Rita, networking with other institutions dedicated to children's issues.

    Rita Año Olivera - Nurse And Community Liaison

    Quechua speaking nurse with formal medical training and a huge heart; highly respected in the communities & coordinator of the community projects.

    Esmaran, Permaculture Architect And Environmental Engineer

    An NGO friend from Australia, who will create the environmentally sustainable design of the Children’s Home and help with the architecture & planning.