GringoPost | Ecuador: Cooperation in the time of COVID-19

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Cooperation in the time of COVID-19

Cooperation means different things to different people. For us here at Hogar de Esperanza, it means giving and sharing freely with others without expecting any recognition, reward or personal benefit. It means you are there for each other, sharing resources whenever possible, and sometimes being the giver while other times being the one to ask for help. We are proud to have built special relationships of cooperation with other foundations and organizations in Cuenca.

Our partnership with Mujeres con Exito/Casa Maria Amor is one of these special relationships for which I am extremely grateful. During this lockdown, Mujeres received donations of fruit which they generously shared with us, to help feed the many hungry souls we care for at the house and within the community each day. From our food bank on site, we have in turn helped provide food packages for the 25 women who they support with transitioning back into a stable life which includes work, but who are temporarily unemployed due to the closure of their restaurant and laundry facility during the crisis.

We work closely with the Municipal Shelter which houses some of the homeless here in Cuenca. At the foundation, our house is nearly at full capacity right now, so the shelter took in two of the homeless youth we have been supporting. In turn, we provided the shelter with flour and other baking supplies to allow their residents to take on the responsibility of making their own bread (with many learning a new skill in the process). Many of these homeless youth are addicts, so in coordination with the Ministry of Health, some will be transferred to the addiction treatment center in Gualaceo. Others will receive valuable life skills and employment training. We hope that through our cooperation, and by showing these youth some compassion, some will be motivated to turn their lives around.

One of Hogar de Esperanza’s main objectives has been to foster cooperation. During this difficult time, we have seen heartwarming examples of cooperation and support from both the Ecuadorian and Expat communities. It is our hope that this cooperation becomes a mainstay in the community long after life returns to some semblance of “normal” again, that this cooperation we have built up becomes a normal way of living and working. I feel that it is entirely possible, because many of us will be forever changed as a result of this challenging experience we’re going through together.

To make a contribution in support of our work helping those most in need, you can donate online at: http://www.hogaresperanza.org/en/donations/. If you prefer to make a donation through bank transfer, or would like to make a cash donation or in-kind donation of items, please contact us. Thank you for helping us to help others – we could not do it without you.

Garry Vatcher: info@hogaresperanza.org 099 094 7611. Call after: 6 AM.

City: Cuenca