In mid-2020, we received an extraordinary email. A young man from the US told us how he worked extra hours for a courier service to save up and make his dream come true: Moving to Peru and starting an NGO to give children from poor communities better opportunities by teaching them English. He even wanted to start his own school for people of the community in the Andes he had chosen to be his new home. I was really impressed by determination and wanted to do everything to help him not only as a lawyer but also as a friend. To be honest, it was quite a challenge for our office. When Truman first contacted me, we were in the middle of the corona pandemic and all airports were still closed. There was no date yet for international flights to be possible again. His local partners were in Huancayo and couldn’t come to Lima to sign the papers for the foundation of the NGO.
As a result, this project turned out to be one of the most challenging tasks in my entire law practice and I feel proud as a lawyer and as a person that we managed to make Truman’s dream come true. Some documents travelled thousands of kilometers to gather all necessary signatures and when we finally managed to register the NGO, Truman was still in the US. However, when he came to Peru, he could already take advantage of all tax benefits that are granted to an NGO and we could immediately start with his immigration process. Today, he’s a legal resident of Peru and as a person, it fills me with happiness that we managed to finish the process smoothly despite the difficult circumstances.
Peru needs more people like Truman. People who work silently but make a huge difference. He came to Huancayo, fell in love with Peru and its people and is now building his future in the country step by step, including the future of many children in the community he chose for his project. I’m convinced that the community and their people will benefit greatly from his efforts and am proud that Truman chose NVC Abogados to be his partners for this project.
Last but not least, I’d like to mention that I accompanied the creation of a number of NGO’s in my 26 years as a lawyer, first in Argentina and since 2007 in Peru. However, Truman’s project left a special impact because he pursued his dreams in these times of uncertainty where people are afraid to leave their homes and avoid spending money because they don’t know what the future may bring. Despite of all this, Truman left his home in Minneapolis and came here to help Peruvian children and their families in middle of a global pandemic. I wish him all the best for his project and NVC Abogados will be there for him whenever he needs our support.
We’d like to thank Truman for his trust in our law firm and our work but most of all for what he does for the community of Quishuar. Truman is one of those people I like to call “anonymous heroes”, someone who works following his heart and who is totally convinced of his visions and dreams.
My assistant did an interview with Truman which we are happy to publish on our website.
Feel free to follow his project on his Facebook Page.
Sergio Vargas, NVC Abogados
Interview with Truman Moore, Jempstar Peru
Could you tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Truman Moore, and I was born in downtown Minneapolis. I was raised a few short miles from there in the inner city of North Minneapolis. Of course, growing up in the inner city where you’re a minority isn’t the easiest thing in the world, but I credit my mom and a neighbor whom I considered a grandmother for the person I am today. These two women gave me the tools and confidence I needed to live the life I’m living today. In the US, before I moved to Huancayo, Peru in July of 2019, I was living what everyone considered the American Dream. I had a great job with wonderful benefits and vacation time, several cars, a house, and before I moved to Huancayo Peru in July of 2019, I was in the process of buying a second home. I had the life a lot of people would love to have, but there was something missing, happiness. I moved to Peru to help raise a boy I met through a very good Peruvian friend of mine, and to start an English school free to children from families with a low income to give them a head start in life. I feel that this is really what happiness is, making a difference.
When did you first travel to Peru and how did you discover Huancayo?
I first traveled to Peru, Huancayo specifically, in 2012. I always wanted to be a teacher, but my career path didn’t lead me in that direction, so teaching is what I did on my vacations from my real job. I researched teaching in Central and South America, and a school named Tinkuy Peru appeared. I inquired about it, and found out it was a grassroots organization that helped families outside the city center of Huancayo, particularly children. I spent 3 weeks teaching there, and I have to say those were the best 3 weeks of my life! When I physically returned to the states after spending 3 weeks with those children, but my heart never left Peru, which is why I live here now.
You started Jempstar Peru as a small private project and are now turning it into an NGO. What is the project about and why did you start it?
I started Jempstar Peru for a few different reasons. My good friend has a NGO, and I traveled to Peru several different times to work with him and support him in what he does. After working with him the first time, I knew my dream was to work with children in a third world country, specifically teaching English to children in rural communities. That is why I started Jempstar Peru, to give children an opportunity to have something that even other children in better economic situations don’t have, true knowledge of the English language. Since I have been in Peru, I have learned that even though a lot of kids learn English in the public school system, it is not of good quality. I had trouble helping a teenager with her English because the quality of her assignment was so bad. I always excelled in English as it was my favorite subject. I took a very difficult honors English course at the University of Minnesota, and passed that class easily. In my opinion, the type of assignments and quality of those assignments here in Peru are not doing anything to get kids ahead in life. That’s my goal with Jempstar Peru, to get the kids ahead in life, and give them something most other kids their age don’t have, a good grasp of the English language.
What happened this year? How did Covid-19 affect your travel plans and your project?
This year has been anything but easy for me. I was in the US for much of the COVID-19 outbreak as flights from the US weren’t allowed, but luckily I returned to Peru November 30 of last year. The coronavirus is still very bad here, and in person classes are still not allowed in most places. I’m still currently waiting on my Peruvian ID to begin teaching, which I believe has been delayed more because of this outbreak. I am talking to mayors of two small country towns in the Andes Mountains where there are many poor children. With my ID and the documents from Jempstar Peru, I can begin teaching very soon. I have a house not far from these 2 towns I will be going to this weekend, and talking with the mayors again at the beginning of next week. One of these towns have in school classes while the other town still does virtual learning. I need to know if I’ll be starting with virtual learning with both, and exactly when I can begin teaching. This pandemic has made working with the children here nearly impossible, but I finally see a light at the end of the tunnel!
What was your experience with NVC Abogados like? How did they help you and why was it necessary to hire a lawyer?
My experience with NVC Abogados was excellent! I was in the US when I first contacted NVC Abogados, and after my first video chat with Sergio, I knew he was the one who could help me. I knew he cared about helping me live my dreams. He was very personable, and became a good friend throughout the entire process of helping me create Jempstar Peru. With Sergio, obtaining my work visa and creating my NGO was one of the easiest things I’ve ever done. I know it wasn’t the easiest thing for Sergio though, as I tried to do this on my own in 2019. As a foreigner, you are only allowed to stay in Peru 6 months, and I tried creating my NGO on my own during that time with no luck. I also couldn’t obtain a work visa either, so I was forced to return to the US right before the pandemic hit. When the Peruvian border opened to international travel, I wasn’t going to waste my time trying to do things on my own again. Peru makes it very difficult for foreigners to do anything here, so I knew I needed the help of a lawyer. I thought Sergio worked very quickly. After my own experiences in 2019, this was impressive to see. He has a great work ethic, and being originally from Argentina, he is one of us, someone who wanted to come to Peru to help others.
What are your plans for next year, personally and with Jempstar Peru?
This coming year, I have a lot I’ll be doing. I have 2 properties, one in the city outside of Huancayo, and one in Salcabamba, not far from where I’ll be teaching. Both properties need work, so when I’m not teaching 3 days/week, I’ll be improving my home life. I have a very small rustic house in Salcabamba that still needs work, and my property in the city (where I’m at most of the time) I live in what is basically a 8X10 pergola I built to enjoy the outdoors after my house is built. Food, shelter, and starting Jempstar Peru are the most important things! My vision for Jempstar Peru for the coming year is not only teaching the children English, but to also teach them how to become good members of the community. I’ll be starting a trash/recycling program with my school to help do this. I also have connections with other NGO’s in Huancayo I’d like my kids to know and learn about, and create Christmas cards for.
Do you want to start an NGO in Peru or need other kind of information about how to become a resident or company owner? Book an online consultation or an appointment at our office and we’ll be glad to help you.