Co-Creating Heritage in Rural Peru

My name is Elizabeth Cruzado Carranza and I am from Lima, Peru.  Next month I will graduate with a Masters degree in archaeology from the University of Memphis.  My thesis research was based on a multi-year project in which I participated on the prehistory of the archaeological site at Hualcayan in the north central Andes of Peru.  During my years at the remote 400-person village of Hualcayan I came to make many good friends with the local residents.

I have now been accepted to the PhD program at the Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, where I will continue research on my homeland’s prehistory.  I was very excited to be invited by residents from small rural community of Nivin, on the north coast of Peru to work with them and their school’s teaching museum.  The goal of the museum is to educate the students and local community about their prehistoric cultural heritage so that they may learn from and better protect their cultural resources.  At the school, Professor Gustavo Valencia and his colleagues also have developed extensive community gardens to promote sustainable agricultural practices in the region.  

When I first visited Nivin last summer and asked Professor Valencia what were his immediate needs, he replied “books in Spanish on how to operate a museum.”  We have provided the school with those texts. 

I am making a commitment in Nivin to make community based archaeology and the school museum a focus of my doctoral research.  Although in the coming years I will seek grants to support this work, when I leave for Peru this May, I will need funds to launch the program. As I graduate from the University of Memphis, I am asking my family, friends, and supporters to contribute funds to launch our Nivin project this summer.  Your contributions will be used to purchase equipment such as a microscope, storage containers, display cases and the materials Professor Valencia and I determined were needed by Nivin students in their school for their education to preserve their cultural heritage.  

All of the materials purchased through your constributions  will remain in Nivin as the property of the school.   Click Here  for a detailed project budget.

I thank you in advance for your support!

Organizer and beneficiary

Robert Connolly
Memphis, TN
Elizabeth Katherine Cruzado Carranza

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