An advocate for children in Ecuador

Lucia Rosa works as a community mobiliser for an early childhood development program supported by ChildFund and our local partner FOCI, in Ecuador`s Imbabura province. Lucia serves as the link between our local partner and the people in her community. She invites mothers, fathers and other caregivers to learn methods that will help their children develop skills they need to achieve success later in their lives.

I got married when I was 25 years old. At the time I was at university studying ”as a distance-learning student” to become a lawyer. After my two children were born, I had to abandon my studies and devote myself to their upbringing and care. In my free time, I also helped my husband with farming.

One day, I met a community mobiliser who told me about a program for girls and boys under five that was being implemented by ChildFund Ecuador and FOCI in my community. At the time, I had resumed my studies at a university in my province, but I had changed my career to become a preschool teacher. Since the program had a lot to do with my career plans, I found it very interesting and I began to attend the weekly meetings.

 

Lucia (left) after graduating from ChildFund Ecuador’s early childhood development program

In my community I helped form a group of mothers who had children under five years of age, where I passed on the information I learnt in the training sessions. Since I had no children younger than five (my children are nine and 13), the other mothers appointed me workshop leader and gave me the opportunity to share with the group and to get more experience working with parents and children.

I always had my husband`s support throughout this process. On the days I had training sessions or workshops, I did the housework ahead of time, so I could go out feeling content.

After completing the training process with ChildFund, which lasted about 10 months, I now realise how much I have learnt. I now understand how important it is for children to develop according to their age, and how a good diet and living in a peaceful household contributes to their development. Children grow up safe and happy if they live in a home where there is no abuse among family members.

At the end of last year, I had the opportunity to apply to be a FOCI community mobiliser, and I won the job! I am now part of an organisation which gives me the opportunity to serve my community. I have now finished my preschool teacher studies, and I am very happy because my family lives in harmony. My husband and I learnt that to devote time and love to our children helps them grow up healthier and happier.

Lucia (in a blue shirt in the front row) training mothers on early childhood development in her province

ChildFund Ecuador`s early childhood development program supports thousands of infants and young children every year. By working together with parents, caregivers and communities, ChildFund is helping to ensure infants in Ecuador have the nutrition, care and stimulation they need to achieve their full potential.

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