‘Being on site alongside the producers and making decisions with them’

Before his departure

Simon is an agronomy student. Currently taking a year’s sabbatical before finishing his training as an engineer, he has decided to leave for 6 months for Peru to work on the Sacha Inchi project, supported by Solidaile. Here he explains why he chose this project and what his tasks will be once he is on site.

‘Can you introduce yourself briefly?

I am a 21 year old student at AgroParisTech, an engineering school for the study of Agronomy and am taking a year’s sabbatical before completing my last year of studies. Currently I am doing an internship at the European Commission in Brussels. I will be leaving in March for Peru and will stay until August, working on the Sacha Inchi project.

What interested you about this project?

I wanted to be working ‘on the ground’, be close to the participants in the project, in order to understand fully the impact of the work undertaken. That’s what pleased me about the Sacha Inchi project. The volunteers are on site with the producers and decide the next steps of a project in dialogue with them. Lastly the multi-discipline nature of the project interested me. The development of the line extends from the production of the nuts and their transformation through to the research of commercial outlets for the sale of bottles of oil.

 What will be your task on site?

Exactly what I do will be discussed with Jose, in charge of the cooperative, and will equally be dependent on the conclusions reached by Bastien’s audit report. Though researching outlets in the surrounding shops, following the production process and seeing to the upkeep of the land will certainly form part of my tasks.

What do you expect from this experience?

I am dying to leave! I hope to see progress in the project during my time volunteering. I am sure it will be an unforgettable experience.

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