Chirapaq is a Peruvian non-governmental association that is run and led by indigenous citizens who work to build an inclusive and equitable society in which the rights and dreams of indigenous peoples are respected. Chirapaq has a strong commitment to indigenous women, who are integral to the preservation of indigenous cultural inheritance. The organization has a democratic and intercultural vision, which is supported by people from diverse fields who identify with and are committed to their mission. Chirapaq is involved in the indigenous movement on both a national and international level, actively participating in different networks, which seek the validation of, as well as the social, cultural, and economic development of indigenous peoples. IWHC has supported Chirapaq since 2009.
- Permanent Workshop of Andean and Amazonian Indigenous Women: 120 indigenous women representing 30 indigenous women’s organizations from the Highlands and Amazon meet on a quarterly basis to set a common agenda, share information, and receive training by Chirapaq on human and indigenous rights, advocacy, health (including sexual and reproductive health), and non-profit management.
- Capacity Building for Indigenous Women Leaders: Chirapaq is preparing an accurate mapping of the sexual rights and reproductive health (SRRH) services provided to indigenous women in the region of Ayacucho in the Peruvian Highland and of Junín, a region in the central highlands and westernmost Amazonia of Peru, populated by both Amazon and Highland indigenous populations. Chirapaq plans to implement information campaigns with 200 indigenous women leaders from both the Amazon and Highlands, providing them with the skills and information to become advocates for sexual and reproductive rights and health with the government and within the indigenous movement.
- Sexual and Reproductive Health Training for Indigenous Youths: Chirapaq began to do trainings for indigenous youth on sexual and reproductive health at the national level in 2006, and in 2009 they began to host the trainings at the regional level. They have hosted three-day sexual and reproductive health trainings for indigenous youths in three regions of Peru: Ayacucho, Junín and Puno. The Workshops’ participants are representatives from indigenous organizations in their communities and were chosen to participate in the workshops because of their leadership potential. The main goal of the workshops is to form a new generation of leaders within Peru’s indigenous populations through informing participants about how to respect their bodies and prevent unwanted pregnancies and STIs. As part of the comprehensive sexuality education program, Chirapaq develops the leadership potential of each participant and empowers each youth to become peer educators.
“My mother died at 48 years old of cancer, believing it was witchcraft
and not knowing that she could have been cured. Her story inspired me to
do many things, including found Chirapaq in 1986, in order to improve
the conditions of women in the [Peruvian Andean] region I came from. I
claim the importance and the dignity of women’s role. Women do not need
assistance, but they need an opportunity to keep growing.” – Tarcila
Rivera Zea, founder of Chirapaq
Since it was created in 1996, Chirapaq’s Indigenous Women's Program has built leadership capacity and specific skills of hundreds of indigenous women to advocate for their rights in their communities. The women who have received training from Chirapaq represent 37 language groups from 14 Peruvian regions.
If you are a Spanish speaker, learn more about Chirapaq on their website.