Empowering Women on the Inca Trail
SAM TRAVEL PERU gives full validation and recognition to all our female staff members within the organization. For us, empowering women is to allow them access to equal opportunities for advancement and participation within the company. Women hold positions in the office, are part of our team of porters, as well as tour guides that lead successful multiple day expeditions. We run an effective system that ensures equal pay and “team” is the hierarchy. Our social projects are geared towards facilitating the economic, educational and leadership growth of women in isolated tribal communities, so that they are equipped with the necessary tools needed to take charge of their own futures.
Female office staff.
Women in tourism are an essential component in ensuring that the needs and safety of female travelers, particularly female solo travelers, are taken care of. Our female office staff exemplify the phrase, “A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.”- Diana Mariechild. They play an important role in making sure all tours are organized to perfection. They are committed and dedicated to providing a seamless vacation to all our clients wanting a comprehensive and professionally planned exploration of Peru.
Women porters on the Inca Trail
These women are trendsetters, breaking social barriers that many wouldn’t dare to even try. Porters generally come from the small indigenous villages close to Machu Picchu. These villages still have a mindset that’s strongly entrenched in their beliefs of the male hierarchy. When these women get the opportunity to work in an environment that’s saturated by males, they not only get a bit of financial independence, they also gain a tremendous amount of mental and emotional growth. With some families, you find both the husband and wife working as porters, which gives them more financial stability and creates a more promising future for their children. Being a porter is a difficult job, it takes a lot of physical strength and stamina. These women are truly the living embodiment of modern-day superwomen.
Holding Traditions: Women Porters at the Heart of the Inca Trail
It may come as a surprise to most western cultures, that for a long-time women tour guides were a rarity in Peru, especially on multiple day treks. This was due to many reasons, most notably the challenges associated with hiking in the rigorous Andean terrain. To be a tour guide you need to be educated, and to also have an extensive knowledge of Inca culture, history and heritage. But that´s not all, being athlete is imperative. You need to be physically fit to trek at high altitudes, have good leadership skills and judgement in order to lead a team of trekkers off the beaten trek. Now, if you´ve ever met Peruvian women, you would know that it was just a matter of time before they dominated this field. Our female tour guides are skilled in using their strengths and weaknesses to their advantage. They are knowledgeable, educated, athletic and great leaders.
Women´s social empowering programs
SAM travel actively engages in community development programs. Our community outreach programs focus on the many different facets associated with the empowerment of women. We try to not only improve the lives of the women, but also the quality of life of their families as a whole. The family´s welfare so often falls on the feet of the women and our aim is to lighten this load a bit.
Just to put the life of a typical Peruvian women in these isolated villages into perspective, life in the villages is impoverished and old school. Unfortunately, Peru has fallen short when it comes to empowering women leaving in these disadvantaged mountainous villages. The way of life is still traditional and follows ancient customs. Sadly, this means the treatment of women has not improved much at all. Women are generally not educated, marry young, expected to just raise the children and to be completely submissive and subservient. Because they have culturally been expected to stay quiet, they never speak up for themselves. They also don’t have much confidence in going out to find financial or social freedom. This is why these initiatives are so close and dear to our hearts.
Without you, our clients, none of our social projects would be possible. Its thanks to each and every one of you for your continued support. This is why we are able to do more outreach programs and uplift even more women.
As a team we share the same overall goals and values. We understand the value of each and every female team member. We are committed to continuously learning and improving the women within our labor force, so they can reach their full potential. Our aim is to not fall prey to any societal pressures and not promote any gender-based inequalities.