#AMU - Ecuador, young people are yearning for community

The latest activities of the Esperanza project involved 60 young people from the communities of Sálima, 10 de Agosto and Macará, who wanted to return to community life.

published in AMU, June 2021

The Esmeraldas Province is one of the poorest areas in the Country and for this reason we have been operating in the communities of Sálima, 10 de Agosto and Macará since 2016 in the aftermath of an earthquake. The Ecuadorian government declared the state of emergency in mid March 2020 because of Covid-19 and ordered a total quarantine (with the exclusion of essential jobs and those necessary for the delivery of food and medicine). Considering that most people operate within the informal economy, the emergency has also become a social and food issue.

Members of local communities have pointed out the risk of closing the business activities that are part of the “Sunrise Ecuador” project due to a lack of customers of their bakery and chicken farm. The families Progetti AMU EdCEquador 02 ridconnected to the project are risking their source of income. In addition more than 800 families wound not be able to have enough food

This is why the “Esperanza” emergency project came to be: the production of both the bakery and the chicken farm is bought to save jobs and is distributed to families in need free of charge.

Local communities are getting stronger and more capable of leading their own development. As a consequence, the very members of the local communities will directly manage the activities with some help from the outside even in this period of emergency: a better future is in their own hands.

The pandemic has brought with it moments of isolation and restrictions. Whilst being necessary to contain the infection, they have severely affected everyone’s daily lives. In Ecuador, young people felt the lack of being able to gather together and the possibility of sharing experiences with their peers. That’s why we organised activities whenever possible that encouraged them to get together and rediscover their role and potential within their communities.

My dream is to study. I liked all the workshops, here I have learned how to take care of the ecosystem, to relate better to others, I learned to express myself better, I learned that there are new opportunities.

It was a pleasure for us to have this opportunity, it was something new. Games and activities to share with friends from the community. I know that we young people have talents but because we’re shy we don’t show them, but thanks to these moments I learned to let go of my embarrassment and express myself in public…

By rediscovering and practising the golden rule “Do unto others what you would have them do unto you”, the young people also rediscovered a sense of reciprocity, typical of AMU interventions. When they talk about their future, they always stress their desire to strive to grow and put their talents and skills at the service of others:

I like learning new things and sharing what I have learned with others. I would like to study so as to become a good professional and help others. What I have learned most in the group is how to work as a team, to stick together and to learning to share.

AMU-EoC Emergency Project activities "Esperanza":
– Food raw materials sourcing and delivery
– Buying products of the community bakery and chicken farm
– Food logistics and distribution to 400 families in conjunction with local institutions

The Esperanza project in Ecuador is implemented with contributions from Economy of Communion

See all AMU-EoC project news in Ecuador


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