A fresh start for Lisaura and Mariela - MEDLIFE

A fresh start for Lisaura and Mariela

Building a house in the hills of Villa Maria del Triunfo in Lima is a very difficult task. It’s finding the spot of land, breaking the stones to flatten the area, and later constructing a house so that it fits economic guidelines. This is all so that someone else will not occupy the land first. It’s the most powerful and basic law: the one who finds the land first is the one who stays.

But what happens to those who aren’t as strong? Those who have limitations or who have no one to support them? 

In other blogs, we have talked about the migration phenomenon in Peru: thousands of people from the interior of the country move to Lima in search of better opportunities. Where they end up, however, is on the dusty and rocky hills that sit on the outskirts of Lima, a far view from the hustle and bustle of the metropolis city that everyone imagines Lima to be. The people who live on the outskirts have interesting, distinct stories on how they came to reside in Lima. 

Of Lisaura, we don’t know much, nor do we need to know, because her eyes say everything. What we do know about her story is that it is one of pain and survival, and it has touched all of our hearts.

While inaugurating staircases in the community of 15A-1, the terrain we found was black, an opaque stain over the ground that caught our eye. A new war on land had just begun, and caught in the middle were Lisaura and her 10-year-old daughter, Mariela. 


Lisaura is deaf, according to Mariela, due to a sharp fall she suffered as a child at the hands of a relative. She never studied sign language, nor how to read lips.Her daughter has created an incredible code language that only she and her mother can understand. They created their own universe — their own language and rules. A universe that has been reducedto ashes, just like their house. 

About a month ago, Lisaura’s house destroyed by a fire. The burning down of Lisaura’s house leaves us with many questions. Who burned their house? Why did they burn the house? For a house that small and humble, it is probable that someone burned down the house to scare the family so that they could leave behind a vacant lot to be occupied by someone else. Unfortunately that basic and powerful law applies, whoever finds the empty land first is the one who stays. 


A distant sister has been providing housing and shelter for Lisaura and Mariela, but they have numbered days in the household. Their salaries are not enough to reconstruct a house destroyed by a fire: Lisaura as a clothes washer and Mariela as a helper in an internet cafe. No materials in the house survived the fire, neither the clothes nor the bed. 

Now, Lisaura and Mariela need support from all of us: through MEDLIFE we have the possibility to give her the home that she deserves. 

Though she cannot speak, from the emotional weight of her gaze, Lisaura tells many stories, and building a new home would be the best thing for her and her daughter. 

If your chapter is interested in fundraising for Lisaura’s house, please send an email to [email protected] where one of our representatives can communicate with you to explain all of the necessary steps.