live well. give well.


Focus: local community development

Location: Alto de los Mores, Peru

the local hero

Ayni was founded in 2001 by Canadian Margie Orsi with the vision to provide the villagers of Alto de Los Mores with the tools and resources to raise themselves out of extreme poverty.  The Aymara word Ayni roughly translates: ‘today for you, tomorrow for me’ emphasizing communal effort as a means of improving everyone’s lot.  For example, families who regularly work in the communal Tamarind orchard are given preferred access to a micro loan; similarly, the next family in line only obtains the loan after the first one repaid its debt and thereby freed up the capital again.  Volunteers assist villagers in the administration of various projects – ranging from health care to microfinance – but clearly work towards transferring responsibility to the natives.  It is very inspiring to see local leaders emerge and push their community forward towards an independent and better life.

their neighbors

Alto de Los Mores is a small village located an hour’s drive outside of the city Piura (in the State Piura).  Its inhabitants survive from the sale of livestock – a few chicken, sheep or pigs kept in the backyard – sell taxi rides on 3-wheel motorcycles or sell produce from a tiny plot of land just outside the village. Their frequently floor-less houses are made of mud bricks and straw although it is not uncommon to find stereo and TV sets inside.  Malnutrition amongst children is widespread and before Ayni started its work, only about 6 children moved on to secondary education (high school). It is difficult if not impossible to outgrow the poverty through personal effort alone.  Thanks to Ayni however, over 40 children continue on to secondary school and a handful now to university. This is one example of how Ayni projects provide people or children with the opportunities to design a better life for themselves.

your philanthropic opportunity

Ayni’s efforts have resulted in powerful projects and awesome changes within the community. It is incredible that all of this is achieved by Margie Orsi through a month long visit every year, the help of foreign volunteers and two annual fund raisers.  However, resources are scarce and will not be able cover many more scholarships; nor do they satisfy the demand for loans which are vital to self-help. Likewise, health care measures take long to roll-out, such as replacing indoor open-fire stoves with closed ones in order to reduce the number of burnt children and poisonings. You can help by making a contribution now.  All proceeds will be passed on 100%.


alto de los mores, peru