The weavers and Doña ´choza´
START PROJECT: September 2013
For 3 years we work together with a family (one of the few in the region) that makes traditional clothing (ponchos, balletas (women scarfs), samaro (rodeo trousers). From shearing their animals, spinning the wool and weaving the clothes they do everything the traditional way. When last year their old weaving chair was falling apart, we were able to buy a new weaving chair. We visit this family with our groups and individual tourists. When the weavers sell nothing to the tourists they receive from us U$1,00 per visitor with a minimum of U$5,00 per visit.
In the community of Chacaza lives Señora María Manuela Balla, 68 years old. She lives alone in an original choza. Years ago almost everybody in the Andean mountains lived in a choza.
A choza is made from straw, clay and sometimes dried cow-dung and the whole family live in it, including the guinea pigs, a delicacy in this area. Because of the used materials and the fire they make inside the choza (for cooking), a choza is a warm accommodation in the mostly very cold nights at this altitude. As the whole family slept in one bed with a mattress made from paja (straw) staying in a choza is even warmer than in a modern stone house.
We visit Doña María with our groups and individual tourists so they can see how people in the Andean region lived and still live.
This very sympathetic project fits completely into the atmosphere of Inti Sisa Art Guesthouse/CE Travels´ mission: TOURISM IN FAVOR OF ALL OF US.
Quito, Ecuador, November 2016
Wytze van Goor