By Carmen Mary Weick and Jann Garitty
Make a donation to Friends of Q'ewar, a non-profit organization
Carmen M. Weick worked in Peru with the Q’ewar Project for five years. It is “a social work initiative begun in early 2002 [by Peruvians Julio Herrera and Lucy Terrazas], situated in the rural highlands of the Andes Mountains in Peru. Watch a current video made in 2010 regarding the project.
“Working with the indigenous women of the village community of Andahuaylillas, the Project is engaged in creating an atmosphere which fosters self-esteem, personal growth and a way to gain economic independence through learning skills in a humane and respectful working environment.” The women involved with the project make beautiful hand-crafted dolls and knitted items for sale.
A series of synchronicities led Carmen (July, 1999) to attend an anthroposophical conference held in Lima, Peru, after which she began working with a street children’s project in June of 2000. She next worked at a school in Cuzco teaching instructors remedial education techniques based on the Waldorf education “Extra Lesson” as well as flower essence therapy.
Carmen brought to bear on these early experiences in Peru her widely varied background of knowledge and practice in many areas including business, nursing, flower essence therapy, Waldorf education, anthroposophy and her work as a hospital chaplain. Because she also had rudimentary bilingual skills, she was hired as a consultant for the Q’ewar Project in the early stages of its development.
As Carmen’s ability to speak Spanish improved, she began communicating more easily with the women there. She began doing “movement therapy” and they started to trust Carmen. Having confidence in her, the women were not as shy and wanted to talk with her. They would come to her saying, “I don’t feel good,” “I feel sad,” or very commonly “I am always so angry with my father (partner, mother, sibling…).” Carmen realized immediately how helpful flower essences would be for the women of the Q’ewar Project. Carmen received a donation of flower essences and other materials from FES and began to make combinations for the women. Listening to the women of Q’ewar Almost all the women working with the Q’ewar Project had never had anyone sit, talk with them and listen to their problems; they were pleased to receive the attention from Carmen. Carmen helped them to articulate their problems and eventually they were able to speak more concretely about how they felt.
Carmen said that initially there was a language barrier and the women themselves were not accustomed to describing their problems and knew few words to express themselves. Additionally, a culture of silence learned from childhood, hampered the women from thinking about their problems in a concrete way. Many were so burdened with life’s problems that they had nearly totally forgotten their inner core, their soul-life.
However, by observing the women’s body language and from what she could understand, Carmen was able to repeat back to them for confirmation what she felt they were saying. By using the clues and listening to her own intuition, she was able to discern what would be helpful for them. The women know plants as healers and Carmen explained that flowers were healers, too. They had faith in Carmen and they began to use the remedies she prepared.
Carmen found that those women who established a rhythm of taking the essences and using the affirmations she gave them had astounding results; “every woman who used the essences appropriately got results and more importantly, they could speak to a change in their hearts. They felt they could cope better and they didn’t cry so much. Some of them said that prior to using the essences, every single night they would cry… .” Once the women began experiencing marvelous results with the essences, others came to see Carmen, too. She worked with 35 different women while at Q’ewar.
At the end of 2006, Carmen left Peru because of a health condition but she continues to write for the Q’ewar Project website and help as she can from the United States. Lucy Terrazas, under the tutelage of Carmen, will continue to utilize flower essences with the women of Q’ewar. Read in Part 2 how the remedies helped the women of Q’ewar
About Carmen— Carmen Weick is a Certified Hospital Chaplain who has extensive experience in anthroposophic medicine, Waldorf education and flower essence therapy. Carmen’s experiences include living in England for 11 years and travel in Europe. While living and working in Peru, she also spent time in Ecuador, Chile and Bolivia. Write to Carmen
P.O. Box 459, Nevada City, CA 95959
800-736-9222 (US & Canada)
tel: 530-265-9163 fax: 530-265-0584
Copyright © by the Flower Essence Society.
All rights reserved.