Friends Meeting at Cambridge became involved with providing scholarship help to Bolivian Quakers upon the request of a Meeting members who had visited with Friends in Bolivia and was serving on the board of the Bolivian Quaker Education Fund (BQEF). The Fund grew out of visits to Bolivia organized by Quaker Study Tours beginning in 1995, and out of a visit to US Quakers in 2001 by two young Bolivian Quaker teachers, Loida Cutipa and Cecilia Paco. Its mission is to strengthen ties between Andean Quakers and those of North America and Europe through programs that:

  • Enhance the educational opportunities of Andean Friends
  • Nurture their service work
  • Strengthen their schools
  • Bring this work to the attention of Friends in North America and Europe

The funds tasks are to:

  • Explain to interested people in the Western World the aspirations and circumstances of Bolivian Quakers
  • Work with Bolivian Quaker leaders to devise specific practical programs that will help realize their aspirations
  • Raise funds to implement these programs

Fidel Cigua CaraniFidel Chigua Carani is the new Bolivian Quaker Education Fund student who receives support from Friends Meeting at Cambridge. You can help support Fidel by contributing directly to the Bolivian Quaker Education Fund. You can learn more about Fidel from his introductory letter below. For more information, contact Richard Barran (FMC’s representative to BQEF) at or (617) 876-5524.

Scholarships Committee

Ref.: REPORT OF MY ACTIVITIES (Fidel Chigua Carani)
W La Paz – Bolivia, April 7, 2017

Dear Brothers and Sisters of the Scholarships Committee, I send each one of you my cordial greetings, wishing you always success in the work that you perform for the good of Bolivian youth.

I am Fidel Chigua Carani. I am studying Metallurgy, Smelting, and the Iron and Steel Industry, and am now in my first semester at the Brazil-Bolivia Industrial Institute. I feel very happy to be part of the scholarship program after having been in the Student Residence in Sorata for several years, where I finished my secondary education satisfactorily thanks to the support I received there. Now as my life experience is evolving, I should look for new challenges.

I will relate below the activities I am performing in my studies. There are six subjects I need to study this semester:


In my Chemistry-100 for Metallurgy activities, I learned about acids and their oxidation in the Institute’s laboratory. Now I know that an acid is always accompanied by a non- metallic molecule or in some cases by an amphoteric compound.

I should also mention that in the Metallurgy course we collect aluminum scrap like pots, boilers, frying pans, and bowls. Some of my classmates even brought new pots so we could see how aluminum melts and is recycled. While the aluminum is melting in a crucible furnace, we put in iodized salt to lift out pores leaving the aluminum 99% pure. Then we wait for the aluminum to recover while we make a mold out of natural sand, which contains silica. When it is ready we all pass some to the casting spoon and later make a casting mold. We wait five minutes for it to cool, and on unmolding the piece we got the result that we wanted, as you can see in the photograph.