Family Radio CHRI


Day 3 in Ecuador with Compassion

ecuador_day3_08Today we got to meet the traditional indigenous people of the Andes. We also spent time with 2 Leadership Development Program students from Compassion International: Jonathan from Quito, and Edwin from here in Otavalo. Both have different stories and families but they have the same desire to change their country and make a difference in the world.


Compassion's LDP Program is the next stage in a child's development (Child Survival: from womb to age 3, Child Development: age 3-18, and LDP: 18+). This program offers exceptional students opportunities to lead in their community. Outstanding students are offered a Univsersity degree, leadership training (through camps, seminars and workshops), mentorship, health care, room and board... all provided by sponsors. There have been 217 graduates in Ecuador since 2002.

Edwin (age 20) is in his second year of the program and is leading in many areas of his church, and Jonathan (age 23) is graduating this year and teaches Physics at high school and has been able to provide many things for his family. Jonathan's English is very good.


We visited the Evangelical Church of Israel in the province of Otavalo (where Edwin's father is the Pastor) and this one is clearly the more "wealthy"church we've visited so far. The girls in the project have learned skills like sewing and have been able to sell clothing in the local handicraft market to make money for the church. In the photo below, the products they make are also sold in the market around the world. This church has been around for 27 years and has come a long way. Christian missionaries were killed when this church was built so the whole community has grown over the years. Kids and families come form all over the province to attend this church. Kids go to school nearby and then come to the church to participate in the programs and continue learning in the project.

Here, men don't cut their hair and women wear the traditional garments more often.
(I think this is where I got the most attention for my red hair. The women wouldn't stop touching my head!! lol)


I noticed that several children we've met on our tour (like Jonathan) don't know anything about their sponsors and don't receive many letters. They are actually very sad when they don't hear from their sponsors. If I could encourage you to do one thing, it's to write letters and send photos to your child. There was a young boy in this project who ran home just to get his package of letters, stickers, photos and birthdat cards from his sponsor couple from the U.S. to show us. He was so excited and so proud... having letters and communication with his sponsor makes him very happy.

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