Many communities surrounding Cusco are struggling with extreme poverty. The average weekly income is US$5 for a family of 7. Malnutrition and other severe health issues are common in these areas, as families live together in small, unstable housing. No heating; no bathrooms; no running water.
Inca Designs is part of a volunteer initiative to help eradicate poverty in these communities.
Over recent years, with the help of a volunteer organisation known as Peru's Challenge, this cycle of poverty is beginning to change in participating communities. The introduction of clean water and sanitation, combined with the construction of greenhouses to grow and sell food all year has led to vast improvements in community health. Many community members have also set up small businesses, including selling flowers to hotels, keeping and selling livestock and meat, and jewellery and clothing wholesalers.
Over the past few years the average income of families in participating communities has increased from US$5 to $60.
Inca Designs is a platform for these community businesses to sell their hand made products to retailers and individuals across the world.