Peru Week 2: Design Thinking

As many of you probably don’t know, the Peru football team (*cough cough* soccer) hasn’t been to the American Cup Finals in 44 years, but they made it this year, and Lima was insane. We have never seen so many people watching a soccer game in our lives. Even during the semifinals, we were walking down the streets and there was nobody out that wasn’t watching the game. People were crowded around every TV there was. If you had a TV, it was turned on to the game. Every store had people circled around it, watching intently. We went to a cafe 15 minutes before the game was over, and we watched the shootout between Peru and Chile! It was super intense. When Peru made it to the final, Miraflores (a district in Lima, and where Nic and I live) closed a street and set up a screen so everyone could watch the game together. Peru didn’t win, but they did score a point against Brazil, and I’m pretty sure the whole city shook.

This week, Nic and I held two design thinking workshops. One for the “Promotores” (Nataly, Rocio, and Eveli), so they could take part in it, and one for the mothers in their community in Pamplona Alta (30 women showed up!). It started off shaky because even though I can speak a decent amount of Spanish, It was very hard for me to answer questions off of the “script”. I could give them a very vague answer, but sometimes I didn’t even know what their question was. No one there knew English, so I couldn’t even use my Spanglish skills. After a while, we got into a better swing of things, but they struggled to come up with solutions, and with my limited Spanish vocabulary, I struggled to help them. In the future, when we have Design Thinking workshops, I think I’ll get a translator because I could give an okay description on how to accomplish the task, but I think they missed the huge point of the workshop. I couldn’t get them to realize they can start a program to fix some of these issues they have. For example, one of the problems they have is that a lot of people just throw their dirty water in the street because they don’t have plumbing, and since they live in the hills where nothing grows, it makes everything really gross and mucky and hard for “cars” to go up. One of their solutions was to tell people “don’t throw your water in the street”, but when they do that they aren’t really fixing a problem. Some other problems they talked about was the trash being thrown in the street, the stray dogs, fathers not being there for their kids, not having plumbing or electricity, not being able to get a house in your name, and not having many plants. In the end, we don’t think they understood that they could be the ones to be the change, and that was the whole part of the workshop. We have another design thinking workshop in the future, so we plan on updating the process and using Carlos as a translator.

Design Thinking with the Promotores

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