BEWARE OF THIS LADY!

Answers to your qestions about moving to, and living in, Peru,
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curlyguy18
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BEWARE OF THIS LADY!

Postby curlyguy18 » Wed Oct 22, 2008 8:29 am

I ahve come across this middle-aged lady several times in the Miraflores area. She comes up to people to tell them she's been mugged and that she has no money to get home. A few friends of mine have stumbled upon her several times as well.

Cheers,

Jr.


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Postby sonia » Wed Oct 22, 2008 9:40 am

When we lived in Lima, my husband was approached by a middle-aged woman who asked him frantically for money to buy insulin for her diabetic daughter. The woman introduced my husband to the school-aged daughter and showed him the marks on her upper arm left, she said, by previous insulin injections. He felt very sorry for them and gave them a generous amount of cash.

A few weeks later, at the same spot on the same street in Camacho, I was approached by the same woman in the same sad situation. Listening to her troubles a second time, and asking her questions using my background in the health sciences, her story seemed implausible and I did not give her anything.

But some German-speaking European friends of ours in Lima were victims of a bigger scam. Hearing them speaking German, a young Peruvian woman approached them on the street speaking fluent German and asked them for money to save her newborn baby that was very sick in a hospital. She gave them the name of the baby and the hospital and told her story so convincingly that, over several encounters, the European family gave her more than 600 soles. At each encounter, the Peruvian woman cried and told them her baby would soon die if she didn't take new medications that she could not afford to the hospital. Only when Peruvian friends of the European family found out what was happening, phoned the hospital, and learned that no such baby was a patient there, did the monetary gifts to the "mother" stop. Later on, the European family found out that this woman had approached other German speaking expats in Lima in exactly the same way.
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Postby nhonho_88 » Wed Oct 22, 2008 10:26 am

Hic, can you show the pictures of her. There are more and more kinds of woman like that :cry:
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Postby sunflower » Wed Oct 22, 2008 11:03 am

It might sound harsh, ignorant and what so ever, but what would you do when a lady approaches you while shopping in your home town, asking for money because her daughter is sick? Would you just open your purse without hesitation and give her a monthly income???

Sorry, all stories sound so sad, but our behavior educate at least some people. For them it seems much easier not to try finding a job or some sort of income, but to send out their children instead of sending them to school or to just tell unbelievable horrible and sad stories to as many tourists and visitors as possible. Sooner or later they find someone being helpful, in my eyes stupid enough to give them money.

I personally think there are much better ways to help and support these poor people that really need our help. And in the end you don't have the bad feeling that you have been lied to and been mugged. No, you feel that you really have done something good.

Eva
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Postby Arroz con Pollo » Wed Oct 22, 2008 11:59 am

I'm probably a big jerk but growing up in Philadelphia has hardened me to the point that I assume anyone coming up to me on the streets is trying to scam me. This is pretty much true 99% of the time. I ignore just about everyone that approaches me on the streets. I sleep fine at night just in case you're wondering.
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Postby naturegirl » Wed Oct 22, 2008 12:36 pm

I- think I-m rude, I just ignore people and walk past them, old or young. Better to be safe than sorry.
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Postby Yuyis » Wed Oct 22, 2008 3:12 pm

Well than I'm rude too, Sharon. But you're right. You never know if it's a scam or real. Peruvians are masters at inventing convincing stories if need be, or lying straight away. I don't like that, which makes me ignoring any beggar. And what I dislike most, is those sitting on the Church steps after a service and clinging to every person leacing the church.
And yes, I also sleep quite well at night.
God bless Peru - and all of you!
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Postby americorps » Wed Oct 22, 2008 3:29 pm

I always want to be careful not to dehumanize someone in need, so I take a very different approach.

I tell them where they can find help, point them to church or government programs. I offer to take them to a cabina and call the number, for example the ministry of women has programs to help women and children in distress.

If they say yes, I take them and call, if they follow-through I will put them in a taxi and pre-pay the driver and instruct him no refunds or detours.

Over the last 2 years I have found a grand total of .........





1 person to take me up on my offer. I believe she was truley in need and she found help.


I am not saying distrusting them or ignoring them is bad, I think it is perfectly reasonable....however, I sort of like putting them on the spot, it sorts out the frauds from those in need.
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Postby Yuyis » Wed Oct 22, 2008 3:37 pm

That's it! Most of them just want to receive the money without having to sweat for it. And because of this behavior, those really in need do not get what they'd deserve. I have respect for those who at least try to gain something by selling caramelos or the like, or those who play some tune in a bus. But as my wife says: those lazy women begging, could easily go clean a house to make their living. Oh man, sometimes it makes me so sick: 'gringuito, gringuito, una propinita! Oye no seas malo..." :evil:
God bless Peru - and all of you!

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Postby Kelly » Wed Oct 22, 2008 3:57 pm

Peruvians are masters at inventing convincing stories if need be, or lying straight away.


I don't see Peruvians being more masterful at lying or cheating than people anywhere else.
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Postby tupacperu » Wed Oct 22, 2008 6:08 pm

I grew-up in Philly too (whatz up Arroz con pollo?)
Homie (-:


Hey I always give pocket change or a few soles, especially to elderly people. But for the mothers that have their kids in the street and has a baby in her arm, I just cannot give money. Not judging but the father should be support those kids, and to lay down and have a more wow!

Also after being in Peru for so many years, I have become immune to the kids in the street. Now if If my son does not eat his fast food, when leaving the restaurant we give it to a kid or a family,
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Postby rgamarra » Thu Oct 23, 2008 10:56 am

Very and I mean VERY rarely do I give change to people begging.

On those very rare occasions my spare change goes to the very elderly offering a simple service or product. In most cases the elderly are not being exploited like children usually are.

The group of women that drives me crazy the most are the ones that hang around Larcomar and beg for money sans service sans product, only on the mere reason that they procreated.

BTW, Peruvian law says that Peruvians are responsible for their children, not the government.

It's unfortunate, because the scammers ruin it for the few that actually have a genuine need.

I've come across enough scams down here that my level of trust ranges on the scale of slim to none.

Another issue is that if you are scammed there is nothing that you can really do to seek justice. The law works in favor of the criminal, not the victim.
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Postby mammalu » Thu Oct 23, 2008 11:11 am

Like Rachel, I also give to the very old, or somebody who is selling something. At least they are trying!

I like the approach of Americorps, if they are genuine they will accept my help in my terms. At Larcomar, my doggy bag always goes to the first kid who asks for money.

In other instances, I just follow my instinct.....and yes.... I sleep like a baby. :wink:

PS. As a young teenager, once I took a bus and somebody pickpocketed me. I had no wallet, no money, nothing, nada, niente....and the good samaritans in the bus helped me, paid for my fare and gave me money for my next connection. I can still remember my cheeks burning so hot, I was so embarrassed. I am even more embarrassed to admit, cell phones did not exist then! :lol:
Stand with anybody that stands RIGHT. Stand with him while he is right and PART with him when he goes wrong." ! Abraham Lincoln
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Postby esperanza » Thu Oct 23, 2008 11:43 am

My aunt, a clothing designer who lives in Barranco, has taken children and one young woman into her home to feed them and let them wash up. She gave them a little bit of money for food or to take the micro somewhere and told them that if they ever needed anything to come back to her apartment and she will give them some food or something. The children were filthy and were sleeping in the Plaza in Barranco and looked like they had slept there for 3 days. They said that if they didn't return home with money their parents would hit them.

Thing is, my aunt never saw any of those people ever again. She continues to give at least 50 centimos to anyone who asks, but I think all the people she has personally taken care of were either conning her or lazy.

I hate that I have become callus to begging, but by this time there are so many organizations and centers that are willing to help that I would rather help them get to that organization or center than give them cash. My peruvian-born friends have told me that some women rent babies from their friends to beg on street corners.

I will give my leftovers, but if they don't want food and keep asking for just money, then they can help themselves.
A revolution without dancing is a revolution not worth having.
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Postby rgamarra » Thu Oct 23, 2008 12:11 pm

One district that I notice has little begging is Surco. The district has a campaign that discourages begging.

There's one sign that they have that says, "Behind every child that begs is someone who is exploiting them."

My brother-in-law normally has a heart for kids that beg, but he always asks them, "Where are your parents?"
David

Postby David » Thu Oct 23, 2008 12:31 pm

mammalu wrote:I like the approach of Americorps, if they are genuine they will accept my help in my terms. At Larcomar, my doggy bag always goes to the first kid who asks for money.

PS. As a young teenager, once I took a bus and somebody pickpocketed me. I had no wallet, no money, nothing, nada, niente....and the good samaritans in the bus helped me, paid for my fare and gave me money for my next connection. I can still remember my cheeks burning so hot, I was so embarrassed. I am even more embarrassed to admit, cell phones did not exist then! :lol:


I have to agree, Americorps seems to be the very best way of dealing with this situation. An excellent way of handling an often uncomfortable spot.

Maria, I am sure the people that helped you on the bus could recognize your sincerity, innocents just shows through.
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Postby Claudia1973 » Thu Oct 23, 2008 1:43 pm

Always care for the poor. However, this does not mean giving them hundreds of soles when you first meet them.

If you're in America, then give to men especially. There are so many woman-only services that exclude men in America.

There will always be poor, so always give.
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Postby naturegirl » Thu Oct 23, 2008 3:02 pm

A bit off topic, but did anyone see the Dutchman begging near Abancay? I thought that in itself was strange.
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Postby rgamarra » Thu Oct 23, 2008 4:37 pm

naturegirl wrote:A bit off topic, but did anyone see the Dutchman begging near Abancay? I thought that in itself was strange.


Sorry, to stay off topic, when you say "Dutchman" somehow I cannot help but mentally conjuring up the image of the Flying Dutchman from Spongebob. LoL. :lol:

What's the Spanish word for "Sucker?" These people must think we have this written across our foreheads!
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Postby singlefather » Thu Oct 23, 2008 5:29 pm

Well it will be very hard for me to be in Lima for 4 days and see little street children begging for money..

I will have my kids who are a 12 yr old girl and a 9 yr old boy with me along with my Novia.. It will be a big eye opener for them to see children begging and to see poverty.

singlefather


..
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Postby curlyguy18 » Thu Oct 23, 2008 8:04 pm

Well, I don't like giving out money to little kids on the street, but I would give them cookies or something to eat as long as I'm inside a vehicle where I won't get followed or perhaps even swarmed by a bunch of other kids wanting to get something from me.

As for adults begging or asking people for money, you never really know anyone's intentions. If someone was really in need, I guess the most clever thing to do would be to go to the local authorities. When someone asks me for money I just walk on.
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Postby naturegirl » Fri Oct 24, 2008 7:35 am

Rather than money, if I have leftovers from lunch, I hand those out, never money though.
David

Postby David » Fri Oct 24, 2008 11:46 am

singlefather wrote:Well it will be very hard for me to be in Lima for 4 days and see little street children begging for money..

I will have my kids who are a 12 yr old girl and a 9 yr old boy with me along with my Novia.. It will be a big eye opener for them to see children begging and to see poverty.

singlefather


..

It may be a good opportunity for education.
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Postby rgamarra » Fri Oct 24, 2008 12:31 pm

Donating food reminds me of a story an old friend told me in the U.S.

It was the morning and she had her two kids with her so she went to the drive-thru at McDonalds to buy breakfast.

On the way back to her house she saw a man with a sign, "Hungry, God Bless."

Not wanting to give money, but having a little bit extra in her McDonald's bag she rolls down the window and says to the guy, "I don't have any money to give you, but here have this," and she hands him the sandwich.

The homeless man takes the breakfast sandwich and says, "I DON'T WANT THIS CRAP!" and throws it to the ground.

Needless to say my friend was shocked and never gave out food like that again.

- Junior, the idea of kids swarming you reminds me of going to the beach in Florida with a bag of Potato Chips.

As soon as you throw one potato chip to a seagull all the seagulls swarm around you, almost attacking you until you throw your entire bag of chips one way and run the other way.
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Postby sonia » Fri Oct 24, 2008 8:12 pm

did anyone see the Dutchman begging near Abancay?


NatureGirl,

Please tell us more about this. Did he look injured or mentally ill or under the influence of drugs or alcohol? If I saw a foreigner begging in Lima, my first thought would be that something really terrible has happened to him. Like maybe he got robbed of all his cash, papers, and belongings or that he is in desperate need of medical or psychiatric attention. In my mind I'd be screaming, "why isn't his embassy helping him out"!

I've never seen a foreigner begging on the streets of Lima; that would be a sight that would give me a big surprise. Maybe I am too, too naive but my first thought would never be that his actions are part of a scam. I would think that he must really be in trouble if he has to beg. And begging in the rough area around Avenida Abancay of all places! I would fear others would rob him of whatever he still has as he is standing there! But then, maybe I am just too naive.

I would be interested in reading how others would react to seeing a foreigner begging on the street in Lima. And how many others have seen similar scenes.
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Postby timothy » Fri Oct 24, 2008 9:07 pm

The worst of the worst.

Years ago up in Cuzco, there was a very ethnic looking Peruvian beggar who used to work the parque central.

He would walk up to you and stick the stump of his arm in your face and ask for money. The park was his working place and he was there every day.

I went back about a year later, and sure enough, there he was, but now begging with a young boy, perhaps his son, with his arm cut off in exactly the same place as the man.
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Postby sonia » Sat Oct 25, 2008 11:44 am

How horrible! I can only pray that both the father and the child were born with the same genetic deformity and that the child was not intentionally mutilated so that he would evoke people's pity when he begged!!
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Postby naturegirl » Sat Oct 25, 2008 3:06 pm

Here's another scam. I got an email about it, so I don't know if it's true, but I'd rather be safe than sorry.

Someone comes up to you with their cell phone and says that they don't know how to work it and they need to find their friend's number.- Sometimes the cell phone looks normal, other times it has a rubber band on it. Somehow there's a drug on the cell phone, so that when you press the buttons, it transfers to you. It makes you sleepy and numb and dizzy. Then they can rob or rape you.
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Postby americorps » Sat Oct 25, 2008 5:49 pm

naturegirl,

I do not think it is a good idea to let strangers come up to you and ask you to dial their cell phone for them, but that being said, your email story is a hoax, there is no record of such an event actually happening.
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Postby naturegirl » Sun Oct 26, 2008 9:28 am

sonia wrote:
did anyone see the Dutchman begging near Abancay?

NatureGirl,
Please tell us more about this. Did he look injured or mentally ill or under the influence of drugs or alcohol? If I saw a foreigner begging in Lima, my first thought would be that something really terrible has happened to him. Like maybe he got robbed of all his cash, papers, and belongings or that he is in desperate need of medical or psychiatric attention. In my mind I'd be screaming, "why isn't his embassy helping him out"!
I've never seen a foreigner begging on the streets of Lima; that would be a sight that would give me a big surprise. Maybe I am too, too naive but my first thought would never be that his actions are part of a scam. I would think that he must really be in trouble if he has to beg. And begging in the rough area around Avenida Abancay of all places! I would fear others would rob him of whatever he still has as he is standing there! .


I saw him about six months ago, He was tall blonde, had a sign that said he was Dutch and that had been robbed so he had no money or passport.

I also thought about the embassy, but at least for the US one, if you get robbed, you can get an emergency passport, good for a year, but you still have to pay for it. If he had no one back home or no one here to help, then he couldn-t get a passport.

Americorps wrote:naturegirl,
I do not think it is a good idea to let strangers come up to you and ask you to dial their cell phone for them, but that being said, your email story is a hoax, there is no record of such an event actually happening.

I thought the same, though it probably isn't true, the moral is, like you said, don't help people look for things if you don't know them.

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