Doris Consuelo Sánchez Santillán: interview transcript

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Doris Consuelo Sánchez Santillán: interview transcript

Doris Consuelo Sánchez Santillán is a businesswoman living in the small town of Cheto in Chachapoyas province, Amazonas region, Peru. She was aged 36 when she was interviewed on 24 November 2009 for the Rural Poverty Report 2011. The interview was recorded in Spanish and carried out by a staff member from Calandria. The interviewer had an existing relationship with the community but was not a professional researcher.


Interviewer's introduction: We travelled for 75 minutes from Chachapoyas to Cheto, on a road of hard, packed earth. Along the way, we saw plenty of cattle and areas intended for agriculture. Reaching Doris' house, we found her devoted to her daily work. She was standing at the door of the reception hall of her factory, checking the arrival of some milk. Her supplier is a middle-aged woman; she was riding a horse, and bringing two milk carafes of 10 litres each. There were two wooden benches in front of Doris's place, and two of her nephews were playing with their pets. So we sat down to observe Doris's labour; after she finished the dealing with her supplier, she walked towards us with a smile. We were in her hometown… of Cheto. Her house has three entrances: one is intended for the milk deliveries, another leads to the factory premises and her house, and the third leads to the store selling milk-derived products.  We decided to hold the interview in the latter place. 

Let's see… we are about to hold an interview with Mrs Sánchez … we will talk just a little… will you tell us your full name, and how old you are?
My full name is Doris Consuelo Sánchez Santillán. I am 37 years old.

OK Doris… well, firstly, we would like you to tell us something about your childhood…where were you born?
I grew up here in Cheto. I was born in a peasants' village, my father was a peasant, and he was a cattle keeper as well, he basically raised cattle, so we learned how to work with milk in an artisanal manner. We got milk, but we didn't sell it, we just used it for our personal consumption or we made artisanal cheese out of it.

How many siblings do you have?
Well, I have six siblings.

Do all of them live here?
Four women and two men. Yes, four of them live here in Cheto, one of my sisters lives in Lima, and the other is me… living in Chachapoyas.

What order number are you among your siblings?
I am the third child, and the first daughter.

The first daughter? What age difference is there between your siblings? How many years are there between you?
There are two years of age difference among one another.

Two other daughters come after you?
Three daughters. Three more daughters!

Please let me know how life was when you were little children, tell me about your childhood. Did you use to be a rather quiet girl, a happy or a sad girl? How did you spend your days?
Well, basically, we had a happy childhood…despite the fact that we didn't have many material or wealthy things, we lacked things, but we did have the main thing: our parents' love. We could feed ourselves every day because my dad grew foodstuffs and hunted animals, so we ate that. As for me, I worked ever since I was a child because I was the third child…

And the oldest daughter…!
Yes, the oldest daughter, so I had to perform the role of a mother; for example, when my mum headed for the fields, I stayed home, and after I returned home from school, I headed home to look after the animals, to feed them, and to stop them from falling in traps and from escaping from the corral. We had a small corral where we raised some poultry, and I had to feed the poultry early in the morning. I headed for school in the afternoon, and when I returned home I had to look after the poultry… basically, I have worked all my life, ever since I was a little child. 

Tell me… do you remember something that your mum taught you when you were a child? What did your mum teach you then?
Well, the household chores, and to help my mum… I helped her to raise my siblings… in fact, she had children until she was almost an old woman. I myself raised my younger sister, the one who now works with me at the factory, because my mum got sick on the very day that she gave birth to my sister, so ever since that day I have looked after her. That taught me to be responsible, to be responsible and have honesty --we never steal anything from anybody, that's basic -- and also work hard to get ahead in life… 

OK, that was about your childhood, but now let's go forward a little bit into your adolescence and youth, right? How was it when you went to school? Tell me something more about your daily life, your friends, boys and girls….
Well, after I got through with primary school… mainly here in our village… Well, I feel embarrassed to confess this… my dad had the thinking that the daughters didn't need to follow secondary studies… indeed, he had had bad experiences with other girls that had stepped forward into secondary school and ended up becoming pregnant. So when I finished primary school, they didn't book me for secondary. I stayed here in Cheto until I turned 14, assisting in all the household chores, and then an aunt of mine took me to Lima…  

At what age did you go there?
When I was aged 14, 15… I went to Lima, and thanks to my aunt, I followed secondary studies there. It was quite funny because I was in the 1st grade of secondary when I was aged 16, so I was the oldest and biggest student. Usually girls aged 12 or 13 attend that grade… however, I was lucky because my aunt worked as a teacher at that school -- Miguel Grau, in the neighbourhood of Magdalena -- so I was booked for the morning shift. Given my age, I was supposed to attend the night shift, but I was lucky enough to go to the morning shift. I finished my studies there, and after that I left my aunt's place and started working at a family's house. As a matter of fact, my aunt and uncle surely exploited me because, as I was their niece, I was supposed to be in charge of all the household chores without getting any salary; they just gave me some used clothes, only the leftovers, you see?

At realising that, I left their place when I turned 18. They didn't let me go before that because they didn't have my dad's consent for that. So I started working as housemaid for an Italian family. At first I was in charge of the household chores, such as cleaning the house, washing and ironing the clothes, cooking and looking after the kids.   Shortly after I started doing some other work, like errands for the family, I mean, things that demanded more responsibility. I think that it was because I am a responsible, honest and hard-working person… they ran a customs office. And I got an additional payment for those tasks, so I started saving money in order to afford my studies. Indeed, I had the dream of entering into the university to study a career.

Firstly I studied at the Superior Technological Institute Daniel Alcides Carrion, and then I moved to the San Martín University to study nursing. While there I suffered an accident that completely changed and marked my life for ever. As a matter of fact, my purpose was not to return to Chachapoyas, I had other goals for myself; I wanted my life to change. I didn't want to continue with life as it happened in my village, where all men mistreated their women. Even my father drank a lot and mistreated my mother, so I didn't really want to return to that kind of life.

However, when I had that accident – it was in the Tarata terrorism time1  – a vehicle stuffed up with explosives burst out just when I was passing by Patricio Ricketts's place. I was taken to a hospital and stayed there for six months. If I stayed in Lima, I would have to keep working and I couldn't, so I didn't find any alternative other than to return to Chachapoyas, but just for resting myself and recovering from the traumatic experience that I had had.

Nevertheless, I found Chachapoyas very different, everything had changed… I mean Cheto had changed because I scarcely knew Chachapoyas, since I took off from Cheto up to Lima. As I said, Cheto had changed a lot, had improved as a village, my siblings had grown up and looked big, and my father had changed his behaviour, so I decided to move out to Chachapoyas, and shortly after I decided to study there [interview interrupted by people coming in…]

Tell me about your accident, what happened to you?
It was back in the time of terrorism… July 1992, some friends and I were walking along Miraflores, and when passing by Tarata Street, a car stuffed with explosives exploded... I don't remember anything… when I woke up I was in the hospital, with lots of tubes all over my body. It was a very hard time, I had much pain… my back and my right arm and hand were very injured. I developed much bleeding, and I almost lost my hand. But thanks to God and the physicians' skills, I recovered my original appearance. I had in total three surgeries for my hand, and after many grafts and physiotherapy treatment, I have almost recovered the movement of both my arm and my hand, but it cost a lot, I was confined to hospital for six months, and then I spent one year under treatment.

What did you decide to study?
Well, I have always liked action, so I made up my mind to study medicine. There was no university or institute in Chachapoyas, nor anywhere suitable enough to study a career related to health, so I studied to become a technical nurse, and then I started working as such… and then I returned to my hometown, and started making relationships with my people, you see?... Shortly after, some people who were joining a political movement persuaded me to integrate a platform of municipal officers for the municipal elections… in fact, I became the first ever female municipal officer in Cheto. Many people would have never voted for a woman; they argued why I had been elected, that women shouldn't be in charge of those matters. We had to struggle against a lot of problems to reach the Municipal seat. Once there, I started doing social action work, it was a nice job, I liked to support and do something on behalf of my people, so I started liking Cheto more and more, and decided never to return to Lima.

And at what age did love touch you?
[Laughs…] Well, talking about real love… I first met my husband when I was aged 26; I met him at the age of 26.

Were you already working at the municipality when that happened, or weren't you yet?
Yes, I was already working at the Municipality; in fact, I started working there at the age of 26.  I was the first female municipal officer and the youngest ever in the whole zone as well. And by that time I had met my husband, with whom I have two children now.

Besides the accident that you suffered, and the facts of having become a municipal officer, having fallen in love and started running a family of your own, what other significant events have happened in your life so far? If you could make a checklist of the happiest and most pleasant moments in your life, but also those moments that mark our lives and leave a print in them, what would they be?
Look, I am a technical nurse, I got a degree, I got work and so on… Just when I was working, a project called PROMATEC started. Its purpose was to train both men and women for business; then they started training about the dairy industry and I was curious, I went to check out what they were doing and then they invited me to join them. They told me: "Come on, Doris, join us." I started checking it out, and I liked it. Let's say that a I had a "light bulb" moment.

So I enrolled, I got trained, and afterwards, we were sent to receive training courses, and then we formed an association. I opened up the market, and devoted myself to the marketing, perhaps because I already had some knowledge about the marketing field. But from that point, a kind of inequity started to occur: some worked but others didn't, they didn't comply with the sale orders, and I was the one to blame. So I had another light bulb moment and I thought: "Why don't I start running a business instead?" I saw the necessity of a good project. I had a sort of group, so I started with a bunch of 30 people, and they gradually reduced down to a few people, and we became very familiar to one another. But then a family took command, I didn't like that because the business was supposed to give employment to many people, not only the members of one family, so we decided to start running a business by ourselves2… 

We… Two or more persons?
Yes, yes, a cousin of mine called Thalita, who had also joined the project.  She was the most responsible with the sale orders; she complied with everything I asked her to do. Then we conversed and decided to start a business…

When was that? When did La Chetina start? Or…
La Chetina and Arcolacta, which is the same thing because La Chetina is the legal business's name…and Arcolacta… Well, we didn't have so much experience, so indeed we didn't know how to name our business, and we liked the name Arcolacta.  Why?, Because of the rainbow (el arco iris in Spanish), the rainbow that shows up here in Cheto, and the word lactosa (lactose; a sugar found in milk), we made a compound name… but in fact, La Chetina started running two years ago, in March…

2007?
Yes, in March 2007 the production started, and it was inaugurated in May, but we observed that the name La Chetina had more impact than Arcolacta, so now we are gradually changing the brand name.

How many people – you say that it's all women – form the work team of La Chetina /Arcolacta?
See, we are two investing partners, and we have four women working for us at the factory, besides of the stores….

How many stores do you have now?
Three, one in Cheto and two in Chachapoyas: there we have two students. Actually, we usually give opportunities to students… see, my original idea was something like a social commitment, and giving employment to students. In Chachapoyas I have students who work part-time, and here at the factory I have four women - they are unmarried mothers and have kids – they were trained for two years, and now they get incomes for themselves and their kids; now they have become experts in the yoghurt preparation stuff.

How is the business running?
La Chetina – as we are known – is running very well. Besides the three stores that we own, we sell our products in Pedro Ruiz, Luya and Bagua. For instance, people from outside Chachapoyas come along to buy our products and take them to Lima, Chiclayo, Trujillo or Tarapoto. The people of Chachapoyas are learning to consume our products; now they have yoghurt at breakfast or mid-afternoon, as a dessert or to accompany the meals. That makes me feel very pleased, I like seeing people like my products. I think that the reason is because we make it as if we were going to eat it ourselves; we make it with much affection and care, so everyone will always consume it.  We have achieved faithful clients… men, juveniles, mothers. They keep their jars to buy yoghurt, cheese or marmalade. Besides, we use local raw materials, from Amazonas, fruits that have always been consumed here, but now they consume them in yoghurt or marmalade.

Tell us something about the raw materials that you utilise, I know that you use milk, strawberries and other fruits, and that you make some traditional products… how do you receive those products?… and how do you work in that market with the population itself? Tell us a little about that.
The main raw material of yoghurt is the milk; as I told you earlier, the peasants did not sell milk, so at the beginning we suffered a lot because nobody wanted to sell milk to us, we had to train them ourselves. When we started with "La Chetina", the first thing we did was to train the milk suppliers, even from the point of milking the cow. Sometimes their milk wasn't accepted and they had to prepare it once again, because it didn't comply with the quality standards. But, thanks to God, now we don't have that problem anymore; now they are conscious and aware, so now we have plenty of top-quality milk…

Are they from this zone?
They all are from this zone, the zone of Cheto or Acapapamas…

Both men and women…
Yes, both men and women, and now I like it even more, because the women used to do all the work before, they milked the cows and they cooked the food… but now the women milk and the men carry the milk, or the women stay at their homes and the men carry the milk, and then they head for their own activities. It seems that things are gradually changing… 

For the positive…
Yes, for the positive…[Laughs…]  And as for the fruits, before we didn't use fruit as papaya, sauco berries, Morella cherries, pineapples… those fruits were disregarded… When we asked the peasants to give us those fruits, they laughed at us, they said: "What do you pretend to do with that?" But now we make yoghurt and marmalade with those fruits, so the people can get incomes from that, even the kids bring fruits to us, they trade them for yoghurt, or they sell them for money, I mean the fruits that are grown in the zone, they are fresh and tasteful, not polluted with pesticides, they are fruits grown in family farms, or that grow wild in the hills…

What do you produce here? What products do you have?
Besides milk-based, here in the store?

Here…
Oh!, here at the store all the products are derived from cheese, yoghurt, butter, milk, marmalade, bee honey… now we are also buying from the honey producers, and selling the product canned in our stores… Well, my dad is also a bee raiser, only artisanal, not a technician, so we also sell honey, and have more products grown in Cheto to sell.

What do you expect from this business? How do you imagine it in the future?
See, I hope that we will be able to open more stores, diversify our products, try new fruits, such as púrpur or [local] tomatillo, but without changing the look or the taste of our products. We want it to remain the same, without any modification, because that's how our clients like it, with the same flavour and texture. I would like to have a bigger factory, so we could send more products to other places. This would permit us to create more employment for more women and more families of our suppliers, and thus would help my beloved home village Cheto to grow and develop, and more people would know my village and its products through the work that we perform at "La Chetina".

Now let's talk a little about your family… tell me… how many children do you have?
See, I have two kids, one girl and one boy

Do they go to school? What grade are they in?
Well, my daughter will soon turn eight, she is in the 2nd grade of elementary school, and my son is aged three; he still goes to pre-school. 

And your husband?
My husband was born in Chiclayo, [a coastal town] in the north, but we met in Chachapoyas. For me it has been quite hard to manage this, at first I had to raise his awareness because… due to the way he was raised, it was difficult for him to accept my work. He told me: "You are studying nursing, so devote yourself to it!" He didn't accept my work, but now he does. I raised his awareness, and as a matter of fact, he supported me financially to open the factory.   

Tell me something more about… so now you live in Chachapoyas, have two children, and your husband is supporting you with your work and your efforts… but tell me a little bit more about your children… about the services they receive here in Chachapoyas, are they good enough? How are they getting along with their health and their education? How are the services that they are receiving out there in Chachapoyas? I mean, you told me that your daughter is in elementary school and your little son goes to pre-school, aren't they? Is the school education they are receiving appropriate? Is it just the same or better than the one you received?
Oh, sorry, I didn't understand you… well, that has changed completely. The idea is that your children must be better than you are; it has certainly changed a lot. As a matter of fact, neither my husband nor I had that kind of education, or the dedication from the parents to their children that they now have. For example, my girl has never seen her father coming home drunk, my husband doesn't drink alcohol, only in reunions; my girl hasn't ever seen anyone drunk. When she hears about something like that, she is surprised because she has never seen that in our home. We have tried to improve that kind of behaviour because I myself come from a family like that; there was much alcoholism in my family, so I didn't want that for my own kids…

My daughter is receiving a much better education. When I was her age, I had to do all the household chores at my home, but she doesn't; now there is stuff to assist her at home. Thanks to God, now we have enough income to afford staff who look after her while I am working. And we devote ourselves to the kids in our spare time. My son attends a private school because his former public school didn't give enough guarantees to us. He is a hyperactive kid, and has fallen two or three times to the floor. So we made a big effort and booked him in a private school, so that he would feel better…

And as for the health, can they access a health centre rapidly in comparison to your own childhood?  
When I was a child, nobody ever assisted me [smiling]. If I cut my finger, my mum cured me; if I got the flu, I was cured at home. Now my kids have a doctor at their disposal, they have health insurance… it's completely different.

Now let us know about the life in your community… you have already told us about your family, about your adolescence dreams, and you have also told us about La Chetina, and your family… but now tell us if you are participating in a community activity; I would like to know if you are a member of any organization in your community…
Well, here in Cheto I am not participating in any organization or association for the moment, but when I am supported… I mean, now we have here in Cheto… we have formed a group for collecting funds on behalf of people in need… Despite the fact that we have plenty of cattle here, there is also poverty, and the poor don't have knowledge of health assistance, and the assistance is very bad. Ill people aren't treated well, so those people go to Chachapoyas. Now we have a group of women who collect funds here, and I see them in Chachapoyas. I mean, I help anyone who arrives in my community, I help in speeding up the health paperwork, purchasing medicines, and in the city where I live – Chachapoyas – I belong to a network of women and we work supporting people.

You have commented to me about the subject of poverty, and I would like to converse about that with you a little longer. For example, how do you perceive poverty in Cheto? What does being poor mean for the population of Cheto?
Being poor means not having a cash income, because we can get food in the farms… so people work to feed other people, because there are some people who have money, but others work as peasants, they are paid their daily wage, and that serves them for food. But when they get sick, they don't have the money to afford the medical expenses, despite that there is the SIS (Health Integral Insurance, a  Ministry of Health programme intended toassist the poorest withj free healthcare). The SIS is just a kind of fake; they say "Yes, yes"… but a moment comes when, if they don't know enough about it, the medical staff treats them badly, and then I intervene to support them… many times I have argued at the hospital, in order that my people would receive good treatment.  

How do you consider… which do you think are the main causes of poverty, what – do you think - makes the people of Cheto or Chachapoyas become poorer? You commented to me that those people have their small farms, some devote to agriculture and others to cattle raising, but what - do you think, in your perception – are the main causes for families to stay in poverty?  
I think that it is because of individual characteristics some people don't have vision because we come from poor families, nobody helped us… Nevertheless, we make our best effort… people… the conformism… people conform themselves with the little things they possess, and don't go for more, so I think that people are poor for that reason… and they have too many kids. Religion influences them quite a lot, there are many sects around here, and some of them don't accept family planning. So those people have too many children and cannot support them well, I think so.

Look, if you had to look at yourself as a human being, as a person, as a family unit… if you were living in poverty, how could you face it? Put yourself in the shoes of a given family, and tell me what you would do to overcome such a situation and move on with your life? Give a recommendation…
I tell many people to work hard and change their lifestyle and their manner of working… Some turn into alcoholism, so I advise them to give it up, and I also advise women to work and get a source of income. They should assist their husbands to progress. Many times, because of their reluctance to change, they don't educate their children. They say: "I have no money to educate my children", so they don't make any effort. However, other people have educated their children by washing clothes, they don't care, but others let themselves go by every day… they say: "What would people say if I washed clothes?"… It's human characteristics; I think that we should work hard to move forward with our lives.

If a member of your family, or a close neighbour or friend got sick or fell into poverty, what would you do to help them?
I would give them employment… I don't like to give things for free, because nobody gave anything to me for free either, I have achieved all I got by working hard, so I would give those people employment, they do something and I give them money in return.

Now, to finish the interview, let's talk a little about the future, how would it be for you? You told me that you have two kids, and I have realized that yours is a very united family. What do you think about your family's future? How would you see your future within 10 years?
Within 10 years, I would like my business to have grown, give employment to more people, and that my children would be improved. I want them to follow a career that they like, and I would also like to get more comforts; as a matter of fact, we live in a rented house, so I would like to have a house of my own, and build a hotel for tourists here in Cheto…

What are your main concerns about how your future might be?
Sometimes I think of my children… I feel very afraid of dying; indeed, once I was at risk of dying, so I feel very afraid to leave my kids.  What would become of them? 

They are two kids… now Doris, please tell us… if you had to compare your own life as a child with your kids' lives… actually, in some moment then you thought about improving your quality of life, didn't you?
Yessss…

Well, that's the route… to improve your quality of life, to have the chance to study… now your children are little kids, but if you had to compare them with you, do you think that they have the same dreams as you did? From what you hear, what you see, what you perceive, do you think that they will have the same future? 
I think they will, because my daughter is very responsible and hard-working, she is up to date with everything; she says that she wants to be just like me. And I tell her: "No, you have to be better than me, you have to study harder, follow a career," and she replies: "I want to become just like you, and give employment to other people." So I think that they will, I hope that they will achieve progress…

And do you think that – if they had to choose a career when they become adults – would they choose to improve what they have now here in La Chetina, or would they dedicate to something else?
My little kids say that they will make and sell yoghurt. However, I wonder if they say so because they are just little children and are by my side all the time and they see us involved in this business. But their father doesn't like that, he says that they have to become engineers, and we start fighting at that point, and the kids say: "No, we will make and sell yoghurt!" I think that if my daughter had to choose, she would do it much better…

And do you think that your daughter would return to live here in Cheto, and build a family here as well?
She likes Cheto. Actually, once she came over here without me knowing about that, she cries to come, she loves Cheto! Cheto is fantastic for her, the animals, her grandparents, she loves them! She comes from a family – her father's -- from the coastal region, but she doesn't appreciate so much the people of the coast because she hasn't been raised with them, you see? She loves Cheto, it's fantastic for her, she wants everything to be located in Cheto, and she has her home, her pet dog, everything here in Cheto… [Laughs…

Listen Doris, tell us something… in this community of Cheto, what other things – besides "La Chetina" - are successful? What strengths and potentialities does Cheto have, that you could rescue from it? If you had to sell your products abroad or to other communities, what would you tell them?
The tourism has been somewhat left aside here; we have the remains of Colunyacta, and those people who know the remains of Kuelap (fortress on a mountain top, known as "the Macchu Picchu of Northern Peru"), compare them to Colunyacta. So if I had to sell something for tourism, I would definitively sell what belongs to me, that is, both Colunyacta and La Chetina.

What else do you have here? How are your people?
People are warm and affectionate.  Well, they have their little whims, but the people who get into problems are the people who come from outside, not people born in Cheto. The real Cheto people are hard-working and kind, good and reliable people, hard-working women and honest mothers. 

Could you tell me in brief words: what does success mean to you?
I think that success means progress, it can take many shapes: in marriage, in work, in business. I think that I feel like a successful woman because - thanks to God – I have a solid marriage, two precious kids, I have a job and give employment to others; maybe I don't make much money, but I have something…

And do you think that such success could be reflected in Cheto? Do you think that you could transfer this?
Yes, I think so, because many people, even kids, follow my example. I know that many people see me as an example. People say that I started as poor, and there are many envious people. My nephews and nieces and my sisters-in-law say: "Look how your aunt has achieved progress without anybody's help."

Sure, and that is very, very important!
It certainly is.

To finish, there is something else that I would like you to comment to us, Doris… it may be quite interesting if you could talk about your relationship with Chachapoyas… I know that you grew up here ever since you were a child, but your family lives in Chachapoyas, and your factory is located here in Cheto, your parents, your siblings and the people whom you played with when you were a child live here too, is that right?… and, as you told us above, your daughter likes Cheto very much, OK?... but let's put Cheto aside for a moment and let's go to Chachapoyas… In the case of Chachapoyas3, for example, do you feel pleasant in such a place that isn't yours, because it's not your home town… Do you feel good?... How do you relate to the people of Chachapoyas?
To start, I do feel good in Chachapoyas because people have become fond of me, I have become well known because of the yoghurt, everyone knows me for that, and I feel good about that… people have welcomed my product… At first they felt a little doubtful, but thanks to God, now people buy our product, and I know lots of people who consider me as their friend: my kids' teachers, my colleagues and all the people... So now I do feel well in Chachapoyas.

Now a last question that I would like you to share with us… if you had to look at your kids' future, not within 10 years, but in 20 years… do you think that Amazonas as a whole will be able to overcome poverty... Do you think that Amazonas has enough capacity and potential to move ahead?
I think it does… today's children, who are being formed with such ideas, think that Amazonas will certainly move ahead, with tourism and all that stuff… I think it will with the new young ones…

Now finally, I would like to… ask you some questions, for the consent of this... this is important because it would permit us to utilise what we have just recorded with IFAD, which is a world report about rural poverty… then I will ask you some questions, and you will answer. OK…?
Do you agree that this interview be published in the Report about Rural Poverty 2010 by FIDA?
Yes, I do.

Is there something in the interview that you wouldn't like to be published in that report, or do you want everything to be published?
Everything… I have nothing to hide [laughs…].

If we had to put a name to this interview, what name would you like to be associated with this interview? You can choose a name full of hopes if you wish, I have seen a very nice slogan, but… what name would you put to it?
Oh, I don't know, I cannot remember anything at this moment, because this relates to poverty, success, sadness and all that… I cannot recall anything now.

Do you agree to take photographs for accompanying this interview?
Yes.

Would you like to get a copy of this interview?
Yes.

Would you like this interview to be recorded or transcribed, for you to read it?
Whatever…

OK, thank you very much, Doris.


1/ The Tarata bombing was a terrorist attack by the Maoist Shining Path guerrilla group. The blast was the deadliest Shining Path attack during the conflict: 25 people died.

2/ PROMATEC is a project sponsored by the Church. The Church chose Cheto because it is a cattle-raising district; families possess two or three cows each. The problem was that, although at first the participants learned how to make milk-based products, such as yoghurt and cheese, their economic condition did not improve because the Church did not pay them, so many of them gave up, and eventually only three people remained. The PROMOTEC project is still running under the Church's leadership, and has been re-launched with the support of the three women who  stayed, plus three engineers hired for the teaching of yoghurt and cheese-making. However, the products are 1 sol more expensive than the ones made at Doris' La Chetina.

3/ Chachapoyas is a province of the department of Amazonas, and has 21 districts. Chachapoyas is the capital town of the region, and most of the public institutions, such as the hospital, the University and the National Identification Bureau are located there. One of the districts of Chachapoyas carries the same name (Chachapoyas), and is located 1 hour away from the district of Cheto.