We are in Scotland at the moment, visiting family and friends and promoting the work of Project Ecuador. What a contrast in so many ways to our life in Ecuador...
One of our objecctives while in the UK is to find some more sponsors for children we know who need them to be able to attend school this new school year.
It has made me reflect on the impact this scheme has for the young people involved. Karla, who graduated from High School as a result of the sponsorchip scheme is now working full time doing the book keeping in a local shop. She studies University in the evenings. Instead of leaving school at 12 years old, and looking for casual labour washing clothes in the river, she is now well on her way to being a professional.
And the impact does not stop there. Karla has four younger sisters. As she now has full time work and a regular wage, she is able to help her youngest sister attend primary school, and buy her the things she needs. Not only has the sponsorship helped Karla, it is now also improving the life of her sister.
And as Karla goes into the future she is now in a good position to be able to look after her mother when she becomes older and more infirm. She will be able to improve their house and living conditions. She is no longer so vulnerable to calamity and disaster befalling them all.
Karla has also learnt many valuable life skills through her education. She has been taught how to evaluate evidence and information placed before her, instead of being the gullible victim of whatever old wives tale she is told. She now has a good idea of how to prepare a healthy balanced diet for her future family, and the importance of hygiene. She will have better living conditions and be able to educate her own family. The impact will continue into the next generation.
On my return to Ecuador 7 girls are graduating from High School as a result of the support of Project Ecuador. I plan to have a celebratory meal with these youngsters, and present them with a Bible each as a graduation gift. These girls have really achieved something important and worthwhile in their lives. I pray that as they have gained, and continue to gain knowledge, they will also be acquiring wisdom, which Proverbs tells us comes from God.
These reflections spur me on to keep looking for sponsors for the new children needing them... like Cristian, a 9 year old who did not attend primary school this year because his father did not have work, and like Jessica a 12 year old whose single mother cannot afford to send her to secondary school in April.
How wondeful to see even more children able to pursue their dreams in life and become responsible, God fearing citizens.