Cultural Heritage Projects
The Q’ero Nation has a rich cultural heritage. Heart Walk Foundation is passionate about helping to preserve traditions in danger of being lost, as well as to give back what belongs uniquely to the Q’ero – their own stories, for their own use.
Recording Cultural Narratives
The population of ethnic Q’ero people is rather small, yet they are recognized by an international community for their powerful spiritual practices and cultural narratives. Q’ero traditions and shamanic practices are taught to outsiders both in Peru via spiritual pilgrimages and in spiritual centers throughout Europe and North America.
Prior to the 1970’s the Q’ero had little contact with the world outside their territories due to their geographic isolation. However, over the past 50 years a number of books and films about them are now available to a worldwide audience. Unfortunately, the Q’ero people have little access to this content that is typically produced for Western audiences and is not available in their native Quechua language. Additionally, many of the Q’ero born prior to the new millennium had little schooling and do not read or write, making a difficult situation even worse.
Since 2007, Heart Walk Foundation has worked with the Hapu Q’ero people to explore ways for them to record their personal histories, stories, and cultural traditions and practices in their own words. In 2014, we added audio and video digital formats and expanded the scope into the Quico Q’ero communities. The people have embraced this project to preserve their narratives for their children and future generations. Many participants have enthusiastically offered hours of recordings on a variety of topics.
We intend to offer this digital content to every Q’ero community. We are especially interested in giving the films to each school with subtitles in Quechua and Spanish to help the new generations with reading and language development. We recognize that children learn to read best when the content is familiar and culturally relevant and are therefore collecting donated digital solar tablets for every Q’ero school to aid in this endeavor.