Polivio, a guide father in Ecuador, speaks to a crowd as part of ChildFund's Family Education Program.
Families who live in the isolated foothills of Ecuador’s Carchi Province face many challenges. Heavy rains often make roads impassable, limiting residents’ access to the outside world. Most adults in the community work long, hard hours raising cattle or laboring on farms, which leaves the care of children to older siblings. Educational opportunities are minimal, and schools do not have enough supplies or sufficient infrastructure. Health is also a problem; many children suffer from respiratory and gastrointestinal diseases, and there are limited health care services.
Until recently, Polivio, a husband and father of four, had never known life could be different, since his father had struggled to provide for Polivio and his siblings. For Polivio, long days of low-paying work meant little time spent with his children, and he dreamed of giving them a different life.
A Chance for a Better Future
Thanks to ChildFund’s work in Ecuador, Polivio and his children may see their dreams realized. After joining ChildFund Ecuador’s Family Education Program, Polivio discovered that he could not only improve the way of life for his family, but he also could help support other families in the village.
With the support of his wife, Polivio attended workshops and was trained as a guide father. He learned skills and techniques for better parenting, including how to ensure his children’s physical, emotional, social and intellectual growth. He was then inspired to engage, through ChildFund, with local teachers and other parents to share his knowledge.
Uniting the Community
Polivio is now a leader in his community, serving on several local committees, including the town council. Not only is he raising the level of education and opportunity for his children, but for himself as well.
“The Guide Fathers Program helped me to unite the community and the parents,” Polivio says. “Taking part in the Family Education Program has allowed me to educate myself as a person and as a better father, understanding and learning that we must assume responsibility for all the tasks that life offers us.
“I learned that education for my children is very important, and I have learned to share more time with them, to be more attentive, to listen and support them,” he adds. “Actually, the program changed my way of thinking and living.”
Now, Polivio’s dream for his children to have a brighter future is a possibility, and he feels certain that they will have a better education and a stronger foundation. ChildFund and the Guide Fathers Program are helping to end the generational cycle of poverty, giving children the chance to lead fulfilling lives and contribute to their community.
By supporting ChildFund with a donation to Children’s Greatest Needs, you help to provide support to children and families, so that fathers like Polivio can see their children’s dreams realized.