Our Project in Piñán
Our organization's current focus is working with the rural community of Piñán in the North of Ecuador.
Our project mission is for Piñán to have complete access to the public education system as well all the necessary educational infrastructure in their own community. This includes teachers, supplies and classrooms.
To help Pinan build their first highschool by providing the funding, coordination and materials for the construction.
To work with the local school board to bring teachers to the community so that we can offer a full highschool curriculum.
To develop specific career based programs that will help the community in creating local jobs and building a sustainable future. Specifically we will be creating an Eco-Tourism and Guiding program, as well as a sustainable agriculture program.
To offer a volunteer based English teaching program which will be included in their high-school curriculum. English will be an essential skill for Pinan’s vision of creating sustainable tourism in their community.
What We've Achieved
We're well into our second year working on this project with Piñán and we're starting to see some major progress. These are some of our biggest achievements so far:
A full time teacher was contracted and as of September 2019 the first ever year of secondary classes in Piñán began.
The current community classroom was equipped with computers and a projector which we sent down in support of the new curriculum.
An agreement of collaboration on the project between the local school board, our organization and the community of Piñán.
Architectural designs for a unique and sustainable school are in the works thanks to collaboration with the University of Azuay in Cuenca, Ecuador.
We've raised just over $20,000CAD to build Piñán's new highschool!
The Community of Piñán
Piñán is a small village located in the remote northern Andes of Ecuador. It is is made up of about 220 people or 40 families who are part of the Kichwa indigenous peoples of the area. During the early colonial era, indigenous families of these mountains were forced to settle on the current site where the village lies to serve as peasant workers to the Spanish ranches called haciendas. Piñán is one of the last communities in Ecuador still so affected by this colonial regime of haciendas.
Over 300 years have gone by and little has changed in the community. Consequently no one has ever been able to study or graduate from basic schooling in this community.
The remoteness and lack of any opportunities in their village means that most people have to leave to find jobs for months at a time or sometimes permanently. This is what the approximately 200 youth living there are facing in their future right now.
Our organization is working to help Piñán build a sustainable future through education. With a high-school program as well as other specific career oriented programs we will be offering, our vision is that the community of Piñán will be able to work toward developing sustainable industry and jobs in their own village.
The community's vision is to work with their surrounding environment to create a sustainable community-run tourism business that can create jobs throughout the village. Additionally they hope to learn to develop small agricultural ventures that will bring more jobs and as well as serving as their own sustainable source of food.
The community is also in great need of legal services over longstanding land issues. Several of the youth have already taken interest in pursuing social studies and our hope and theirs is that this high school will help in educating Piñán's first lawyers and human rights workers.
Education is the first step toward reaching all of these goals and we are very excited to work alongside Piñán while they make the changes their community needs.
Explore the map to give some context to the story, and see the region around Piñán and Cotacachi, the communities which we work in.