During the month of December, many public and private institutions in Cusco as well as other organizations organize Christmas Events out of solidarity with the less fornutate. Those solidarity Christmas parties are also called “chocolatadas” and they aim to bring a bit of Christmas includig hot chocolate, biscocho or “paneton” (a cake or sweet bread of Italian origine with raisins) to the people, and some Christmas toys for the children.
During these days you will see many chocolatadas all over Cusco; it has become a custom of the entire city. Many families also organize chocolatadas in remote parts of the city for all the children and old people of the city.
In addition, some municipalities in Cusco also organize chocolatadas for the people. They come from all parts of Cusco, including the surrounding villages and communities to receive a cup of hot chocolate, as a gift of solidarity of the authorities with the local community.
Some kids – and often the whole family – come from far away to stand in line for the hot chocolate and the gifts. Some families even sleep in the streets as they arrive in Cusco the day before, while waiting. Many of thoses public chocolatadas take place at local markets, early in the morning.
During the past eight years AMAUTA Spanish School and Dos Manos Travel Agency have built a tradition of organizing a chocolatada. Staff, students and volunteers spend a day together with the kids in one of the many projects AMAUTA is connected with through our volunteer program, handing out hot chocolate, cakes and toys for the kids.
This year we will take presents, toys and some clothes to a project in Cusco – while many other years we have been in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, near to our Sacred Valley Campus school to spend Christmas in one of the small villages or communities there.
Making and sharing hot chocolate with other people is an important part of the Christmas tradition for the people in Cusco and AMAUTA is happy to share this with our studens and volunteers.
The Chocolatada AMAUTA 2013 takes place Saturday Dec 21st in the neighborhood of Santa Rosa. You are welcome to join! For more info about departure time and donations pls contact us.