“I'm going to speak on how important it is to have the poorest of our society take part. For us, participation lets us escape our isolation, break the silence and bring an end to fear.” That's how Don Julian Quispe began at the 2012 International Colloquium Extreme poverty is violence. Breaking the silence. Searching for peace.
We visited him on his farm in Cuyo Grande, a village over 40 kilometres from Cusco, in Peru, high up in the Andes. Every day is a struggle for Don Julian Quispe, his family and his community. It's not just about survival, but dignity and participation in society, too.
Over the years, this man has overcome many serious hardships. Eventually he lost his fear of speaking out and discovered that he had rights. Now he works to defend those rights. ATD Fourth World has supported him. Don Julian's words echo those of millions of individuals living in extreme poverty, a message that calls for recognition and equality for all the world's citizens.