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Who we are

Living Heart Peru’s small but dedicated team of passionate, experienced people base their operations in the small town of Pisac in the Sacred Valley near Cusco.

We place great emphasis on the importance of talking with and understanding a community in order to effectively work there. To this end, we employ local Peruvians to develop agreements with the members of the communities based on their social structure and local politics. We believe that our local knowledge and good reputation is a result of collaborating with the local people – who in turn have responsibilities within our initiatives.

The employment and training of native (Quechua speaking) Peruvians ensures Living Heart Peru empowers local people – the people at the heart of the projects – to help themselves and their community, whilst simultaneously helping Living Heart Peru to understand and respect their culture and religion.

Living Heart Peru  pays all its staff local salaries that reflect the economic situation of the locality in which it works, and happily benefits from the charitable services of a both a local dedicated lawyer and accountant.


Our team

Io Sophia Gillhuber – Executive Director of Living Heart Peru
Io's mission is to support people to help themselves, while always respecting their culture and customs, their self-identified needs, visions and desires. She believes in potential of the people in remote areas in the Peruvian Andes, first of all represented by its children and its unique knowledge, to overcome disparity.  In 2015 Io Sophia took over the leadership of Living Heart Peru and manages its projects with her extensive experience in the NGO sector, as well as in the fields of social work and rural development. Io has been committed in different NGOs and national and international organizations for over 10 years.

With the success of many of Living Heart Peru’s initiatives came more publicity and more requests for help. In 2013 Sonia decided to finally retire and continue a peaceful life out of Peru and passed the leadership of Living Heart Peru on to Io Sophia Gillhuber, who maintains the organization’s commitment to helping people to help themselves while respecting their self-identified needs, visions and desires.  We believe firmly in the potential of the people in the remote Andes to overcome adversity and we are here to help them however we can.

Edgard Zapata Quispe - Teacher


 Elodie Anaya Chastang - Secretary


Priscilla Gallo – Vocal

"Estamos en este mundo por alguna razón, el principal propósito es ayudar y debemos agradecer que Dios nos pone en el lado que podemos ayudar. Mientras tengas un suspiro de vida se puede luchar. No hay nada mas grande que una sonrisa de un niño feliz y agradecido!" (We are in this world for a reason, the main purpose is to help and we have to thank god for putting us on the site where we can support. As long as you have a suspire of life you are able fight. There is nothing greater than a simle of a happy and thankful chilld!")


Beatrice Pitocco - Spokesperson

In 2016, Beatrice was looking to make a difference in the world.  By chance she found Living Heart Peru and was struck by the sincerity of this charity along with the openness the charity had for accepting help.  Beatrice's mission is to try and support the charity by bringing a library, education, and anything else she can to support this very deserving cause and particularly, the children of Living Heart Peru.  



Living Heart Peru also benefits from the help of long-term volunteers. These volunteers travel to Perú and assist the organization with everything from marketing and fundraising to teaching Spanish.  Due to the unpredictable nature of non-profit work, volunteers must be flexible and self-motivated.  They work closely with Living Heart Peru staff and community members to assist where they are needed most.  In addition to helping with the ongoing projects of Living Heart Peru, volunteers can take the initiative to develop new projects according to their skills and interests.  Many of the projects that Living Heart Perú implements would not be possible without the help of our skilled and experienced volunteers. For these reasons volunteering with Living Heart Perú is an unforgettable experience that enriches volunteers’ lives and careers.  If you are interested in volunteering, please contact us!

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our supporters

The Intrepid Foundation is a not-for-profit fund supported by the Intrepid Travel Company. The Intrepid Foundation provides Intrepid travelers with an opportunity to give something back to the countries they visit by supporting grassroots, non-government organizations that make a valuable contribution to their local community. Every donation made to the Intrepid Foundation on behalf of Living Heart Peru is matched dollar for dollar by Intrepid Travel.

Real World are a UK-based travel company who specialise in holidays to South America, such as Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Peru. Real World Holidays We were founded in 2004 by people, individuals who had traveled around South America.

IllusionPhotograph is an ecommerce store selling colorful phone cases around the world, with a portion of all proceeds being donated back to Living Heart.

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