Emmaus Oruro is located on the Bolivian Altiplano in a particularly poor part of the country. The group opened two schools in 1986 and 1991 which open their doors to children for part of the day, in addition to the local state school. The children are given learning support, make artistic items and are in charge of tending the vegetables in the greenhouse.
Training is also provided there for adults in the areas of farming, health, children’s rights and reading and writing. Emmaus Oruro relies on help from young volunteers – often students – to run its schools. Their involvement in the community has brought about a real sense of generational renewal. Some of them attended Emmaus Oruro’s schools themselves as children and now hold positions of responsibility in the community.
The companions also work in a small second-hand shop that finances Emmaus Oruro’s social initiatives.