GringoPost | Ecuador: Stories from the Hogar

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Stories from the Hogar

I get asked a lot of questions about what Hogar de Esperanza does. Aside from our work with HIV patients and others from area hospitals, we also have a program of outreach to at-risk youth. Every time you support MINKA or our Thrift Shop you are helping us give hope to those living on the streets through no fault of their own. We do what we can to help them make better choices and to give them opportunities.

This is one such story (abbreviated) I recently posted of an encounter with a young man who we will continue to work with:

He used to be a handsome man, according to his cedula picture. He still is, in some respects. He lost his front teeth and his cheeks are hollow and sunken. Although he was an orphan, he managed to survive, He escaped his hometown in Colombia, that was riddled with guerrillas and gangs. He would not join them so he was targeted. Now he is living on the streets, first under a bridge, but now he finds odd jobs or begs to get the $5 he needs a day for a hotel room. 

I have seen him around several times, so tonight we sat, had coffee and talked...Carrying all his belongings in a backpack and a takeout container of food someone gave him. Unlike many of the others who claim to be poor but will only drink cappuccino, he just wanted a black coffee... with milk it would cost more, he said. 

He wants so much to change his life, but he cannot, he has no one to help him. I gave him $5 so he would not have to sleep in the bus terminal tonight and told him to come to the restaurant tomorrow. He was so humble, in so much pain, so torn, but had one of the sweetest personalities and honesty you would ever meet. It was raining heavy tonight and everything he had was soaking wet. He said he just wanted to get to the hotel and get out of his wet clothes. 

If you want to know more about our work, please contact us. Minka is Hogar de Esperanza's Community/Event Center and Restaurant located at Gran Colombia 9-69 and Padre Aguirre, Esperanza Thrift Shop is at Tarqui 10-15 and Gran Colombia

Garry Vatcher: info@hogaresperanza.org 096 896 2015. Call after: 6 AM.

City: Cuenca