By Jerry Carnill, ER President and CEO
Today I am sharing an urgent message. ER is facing one of our biggest challenges ever. It’s always been a bit turbulent serving families who glean their living picking through trash at the Quito Dump, but the agencies that oversee children’s services and health clinics recently told us we needed to leave Dump. They feel it is not a suitable location for childcare. After serving here for 19 years, we initially were surprised, but ultimately embraced the request.
So we’ve relocated the Child Development Center to a temporary space for the next six months. I am so proud of our ER team, which dropped everything to renovate the new space quickly and move the CDC. Our medical and dental clinics are closed for now.
And there’s more. The government announced the dump would close at the end of the year, leaving 250+ families without a means of support. As you can imagine the families are scared, confused and wondering what to do. They not only face losing their livelihood, community and identity, but their relationship with ER. For years, we’ve cared for them when no one else did. In the face of theses challenges our commitment to help these families has not wavered.
As we’ve seen before, these crises are opportunities to increase our impact and help the families break out of poverty. For example, when the dump bulldozed the homes of those living there, ER and volunteers opened the CDC and started building simple block homes (13 so far) for families.
- *The new CDC is problematic for many recyclers because it is several miles from the dump.
- *We’re facing logistical issues with meals, equipment and Ecuadorian staff.
- *We’re urgently planning how to provide services to help families become self-sustainable.
We covet your support. We need short-term teams, volunteers, interns and career staff who are interested in pouring into the dump community.
Would you also give to help us cover the extra costs of the new facility and possibly a permanent new location? We need at least $37,000 to meet immediate and future needs. You can also donate online here.
Later this year we will hold the 20th Christmas celebration at the Quito Dump. We would love to have you join us. Please help us as we respond to changing needs. Thank you for your encouragement!
Jerry Carnill, President and CEO
P.S. – Take a look at this short video of our transition to the CDC!
If you would like to speak with me about this personally, call 404-713-5168 or email me at email@example.com.