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Program Name: Chimuk

Alternative Program name: Madre CESAPU

Main Objetive

To empower women, economically & emotionally, and create pathways out of poverty through the development of a social, cultural & environmental impact brand of beautiful handmade alpaca and cotton accessories.

The Problem

In Peru, there is a concerning problem of lack of women’s empowerment, encompassing economic empowerment, skills building, and mental health support. Economic empowerment remains a challenge, with women facing a gender pay gap. According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report 2020, Peru had a gender pay gap of 28.1%. This disparity in earnings not only undermines women’s economic autonomy but also limits their ability to invest in their own development and contribute to poverty reduction. Additionally, limited access to skill-building opportunities further hampers women’s empowerment. As of 2020, the labor force participation rate for women in Peru was around 60.9%, according to the World Bank. However, women’s employment is often concentrated in the informal sector, which is characterized by low wages and limited job security. This lack of economic empowerment perpetuates gender inequalities and restricts women’s agency.

Furthermore, the lack of focus on mental health exacerbates the problem of women’s empowerment in Peru. Studies have shown that women in Peru face higher rates of mental health disorders, including depression and anxiety, compared to men. According to the World Health Organization, the prevalence of depression among women in Peru was 10.1% in 2020. However, access to mental health services and support remains limited, particularly in rural areas. This lack of attention to women’s mental health not only affects their overall well-being but also hinders their ability to participate fully in society, pursue education, and engage in economic activities. Addressing these challenges requires comprehensive strategies that promote women’s economic empowerment, skills building, and prioritize mental health support tailored to women’s needs.

The Solution

  • Short term: Expand opportunities to practice skills for underserved women that will generate individual capacities, using artisanal techniques like knitting, crochet, and embroidery, as well as increase opportunities for mental health relaxation techniques and communal interaction.
  • Medium term: Generate monthly income due to artisanal practices.
  • Long term: Achieve full economic independence, emotional stability, and empowerment as the program grows into a self sustaining fair trade social impact brand.


  • 2018: Brand is named “Chimuk Chic”
  • 2019: Hired our first creative director, Laura Araujo
  • 2020: Full rebrand and business re-model. Name change to  Chimuk. Release first collection “Chan Chan”
  • 2021: Release second collection “Rebirth”
  • 2022: Release third collection “Duality’
  • 2023: Hired creative director, Jose Vilca, Release fourth collection “Huanchaco”


Funding Partners:

  • Hugh & Charlotte Maclellan Charitable Trust (2018 – present)
  • Self-funded

Collaborative Partners:

  • Ministry of Culture – Chan Chan ruins
  • PROM Peru
  • Chicama Boutique Resort & Spa
  • Surf Place Peru


We have successfully been able to provide monthly employment for an average of 17 artisans since 2021. We have injected $23,500 directly into the community in the form of artisan wages between 2018 – 2022.

Artisans report feelings of self- satisfaction, less economic burden, and more financial independence, as well as feelings of community and collaboration.


  • 17 Local Artisans
  • Rosita, Zussy, Ysela: 3 Artisan leaders on monthly salary as production team
  • Jose Vilca: Designer and Marketing Director
  • Belinda del Castillo: Mental Health Coordinator & Local Strategist
  • Katie Baric: Director of Sales & Development in USA & Peru
  • Rosa Brem: Director of Sales & Development in Europe
  • Renzo Aguilar: Administrator & Secretary
  • Camila C: Consultant


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the Lives of Others