• Where We Work


Climate change, illegal mining and the illicit drug trade are a triple threat to rural livelihoods in Peru. Facing poor crop yields and prices, the degradation of natural resources and persistent insecurity, many rural Peruvians find themselves struggling to make ends meet at home, and those who move to the cities often do not find better economic opportunities. 

Lutheran World Relief (LWR) has worked in Peru since 1979, partnering with local non-governmental organizations (NGOs), governments, rural enterprises and farmers to promote climate resilient livelihoods, especially in the cocoa sector, and natural resource management, as well as to increase the effectiveness of public and private investments in rural development initiatives. A hallmark of LWR’s work in Latin America has been the development and use of digital platforms to reach more people more quickly with information and services that range from the best practices in cacao farming to practical tips on how to rebuild one’s life in a new country.

Project Highlights
Maximizing Opportunities in Cacao and Coffee in the Americas (MOCCA)

LWR leads cacao programming for the USDA-funded Maximizing Opportunities in Coffee and Cacao in the Americas (MOCCA) project, helping farmers sell more at better prices, improving farmer production and enhancing sector coordination to drive competitiveness and growth. Peru is one of six countries that is part of the 5-year, $10.5 million project. Through MOCCA, LWR partners with the private sector to not only invest in improving cocoa quality and yields, but also in the systems that make those improvements possible for the future, such as higher prices, good genetic material for planting, and more direct, feasible and profitable supply chains for smallholder farmers. Cacao producers also utilize LWR’s Cacao Móvil, a smartphone application that provides farmers access to a comprehensive guide to cocoa cultivation, covering subjects from planting and pruning, to grafting and treating plant diseases. With the dissemination of research provided by the Cocoa Research Center (CRC) and Bioversity, LWR is developing a regional platform for knowledge transfer to strengthen the cacao value chain.

Strengthening Virtual Attention and Local Integration Services for the Venezuelan Migrant and Refugee Population in Peru

With funding from the Centre for Disaster Philanthropy and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, LWR established and continues to expand its digital platform VenInformado, which provides Venezuelan refugees and migrants with critical, accurate and up-to-date information and personalized virtual legal, psychosocial, COVID-19 and livelihoods assistance. LWR works in close collaboration with local partners Encuentros and Center for Psychosocial Care (CAPS) to provide free guidance on topics ranging from COVID-19 protection and regulations, legal requirements for refugee and residency status, managing mental health, resources for survivors of gender-based violence, and guidance for starting a small business. Through its personalized one-on-one support portal, VenInformado staff have also responded to over 36,000 legal and psychosocial inquiries since its launch in 2018.

Learn more.

Women, Change-Makers in the VRAEM Region of Peru

In the VRAEM region of Peru, one the country’s poorest and the epicenter for coca leaf production for cocaine, LWR works with the women-led Qori Warmi cooperative in the management of its cacao crop, including post-harvest handling, fermentation practices and protocols, and business management. By strengthening the resilience and sustainability of the cooperative, LWR increases participating families’ agricultural productivity and environmental responsibility, improves post-harvest processes and strengthens entrepreneurial capacity and leadership within the cooperative, as well as promotes cacao as a legal and high-value crop alternative to coca.

Promoting COVID-19 Vaccines in Peru and Latin America

LWR provides consistent, accurate, and credible COVID-19 and vaccine information to combat misinformation, myths, fears and distrust related to the virus and vaccines among Venezuelan migrants and refugees, rural mining and smallholder farming communities in Peru, as well as rural cacao and coffee producers across Peru and Latin America. Through a twofold communications campaign, the project provides critical, lifesaving COVID-19 and vaccine information to 75,000 individuals in Peru and elsewhere in Latin America utilizing our existing digital platforms VenInformado and Cacao Móvil while also targeting members of rural Peruvian communities that take part in LWR’s current rural development projects.

Learn more

Adapting Together: Strengthening Local Capacity for Climate Change Adaptation

Through joint funding from USAID and Gold Fields and in close collaboration with local leaders, LWR implemented this three-year project to strengthen local capacity to design and implement climate change adaptation plans and policies. The project successfully reduced community conflict over water rights in two target watersheds by establishing linkages between water users.

Promotion of Favorable Environments for Food Security and Family Nutrition in Castrovirreyna, Peru

Lutheran World Relief has been working with local partner CEDINCO (Center for Comprehensive Development of Communities) since 2011 to improve food security, strengthen livelihoods and support health and nutrition in Castrovirreyna, a remote Andean region of Peru. Through our Promotion of Favorable Environments for Food Security and Family Nutrition in Castrovirreyna project, in collaboration with Growing Hope Globally, we work to increase yields of nutritious food by training Indigenous farmers on organic production methods, including seed banks, post-harvest storage and family greenhouses. By strengthening small livestock rearing and the availability of natural iron supplements, not only do families have greater access to meat but childhood anemia is decreasing. Farmers are also trained to market their organic potato and vegetable crops — for example, selling to organic potato chip markets in Europe — and manage their farm income. The project coordinates with educational institutions and health facilities to promote social and behavioral change that advances good nutrition and hygiene habits. Home visits raise awareness about anemia and parasites, teach children about the importance of hand washing and improve household WASH practices.

Safe and Healthy Schools in Pasco, Peru

With funding from Nexa Resources, Lutheran World Relief strengthened rural educational institutions in the mining region of Pasco, Peru by training students and teachers to properly use and maintain their school water and sanitation facilities, improving access to and application of digital teaching and learning resources, and promoting the active involvement of parents and family members in the management and maintenance of school infrastructure.

Promoting Food Security in Castrovirreyna, Peru
Qori Warmi – Women-led Cocoa Cooperative in Peru
VenInformado: Legal Assistance for Venezuelan Migrants and Refugees in Peru
The Corus Effect

Lutheran World Relief is part of Corus International, an ensemble of global leaders in international development and humanitarian assistance. In addition to Lutheran World Relief, the Corus family of organizations includes global public health agency IMA World Health, U.K.-based technology for development company CGA Technologies, impact investing group Ground Up Investing, and direct trade company Farmers Market Brands.

We operate as permanent partners, integrating expertise, disciplines, approaches and resources to overcome global health challenges, develop productive and stable economies, improve resilience in the face of climate change, and respond to natural disasters and humanitarian crises.

With the support of our family's diverse set of partners and funding – from multi- and bilateral institutions and foundations to the private sector and individuals – we invest in solutions that are innovative, scalable, holistic and move the needle towards transformational change.

Are You on Social Media?

We are too! Let's connect.