Over 5000 children work and live in the streets of Quito, the capital of Ecuador. Their family backgrounds vary a lot, but in all cases they are forced to work on the streets and face constant danger. This has become an everyday standard of Quito’s streets and people got used to it and even consider it as normal.
Since 1980 the Fundación Proyecto Salesiano Chicos de la calle tries to confront this problem by different projects in the capital and five other cities of Ecuador. Their professional work convinced us to collaborate with them in what we do since 2007.
Another perspective of our project is environmental protection. In past years, the region “Corredor Chocó-Andes” in Ecuador, has been threatened by illegal deforestation, pipelines, etc. with irreversible consequences, putting in danger the flora and fauna of this unique cloud forest (and of the entire ecosystem), which was named by Birdlife International as the most important region for bird protection-area in South America.
For these reasons, we created a project in order to protect this unique Region of Ecuador and to give children a retreat from the smoky, working city of Quito.
Since 2007 we are able to realize artistic workshops at the founders´ father´s finca about to hours by car from Quito. One of the goals of these workshops is that all participants – the children as well as the faciliators – get the chance to discover and to learn something about each other and themselves. We aim to challenge the children´s creativity, awake their inner artist and elevate their environmental awareness. By meaningful exhibitions as the outcome of our workshops we want to enable a dialog in the society about the treated issues.
We are happy and proud to tell that our experiences since 2007 have been positive in any way. The feedback by the children themselves and by some of their parents, motivated us just like the feedback of the visitors of our exhibitions – 2008: Yo veo esto, tu que ves? / 2010: YO en medio – and the media, to go on with our work.
Our aim is to provide something suitable which means that the workshops take place continuously every year and -in long terms – prepares as well some of the participating children to lead their own workshops and become leaders in their communities.
Mission and Vision
We are non-governmental and not-for-profit organization providing alternative spaces and non-formal education for marginalized children with focus on the environment and the arts.
Our vision is a world in which every child holds the right of participation, education and development in a save and friendly environment and where people listen, respect and value every child.
Our mission is to provide space for their childhood and creativity to blossom, as an inspiring alternative to their everyday life on the streets, and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives, for both the children and their communities.