Our Goal: In collaboration with local citizens, governmntal and non-governmental organizations, to improve the health, education, and living conditions of children, families and citizens of Belen currently living in extreme poverty.
Belen (spanish for Bethlehem), one of Peru’s most distressed communities, sits at the edge of Iquitos (pop 400,000), the world’s largest city unreachable by road. Lower Belen (pop. 12,000), the riverfront district in the floodplain of the Itaya River, is inundated by floodwaters from January to June each year . Residents experience many problems (lack of clean water, sanitation, adequate health care, education and employment, high rates of illness, violence, alcoholism, drug abuse and teen pregnancy).
10 years ago, Gesundheit! and Bolaroja clowns, in a meeting with Belen citizens, conceived the Belen Project, a collaborative effort to energize Belen citizens’ dreams for a healthier, happier community. From the original decision to paint every house in Lower Belen, the project has evolved to include workshops for children in art, dance and music; mural painting; community health outreach programs; parades, talent shows, and the purchase of land for the building of a community center, Belen’s first. The Belen Network now consists of a variety of organizations, (Bolaroja, Gesundheit!, Amazon Promise, La Restinga, Selva Amazonica, Pan American Health Organization, and others) whose intention is to provide Belen with support and facilitation of their desired development.
Belen Project and Festival please visit: www.belenproject.org