We propose to identify one, local, adult community member who understands the society and its challenges to perform the work of mobilizing the community. This person will not be viewed as an outsider, and should maintain the trust of the community. RIEcuador will pay her (or him) for the work she performs, ensure that the work is properly valued and attended to. We estimate the cost of this labor will be very modest- less than $500 for the entire year. Additional costs, associated with holding periodic community meetings (refreshments, space, and transportation), will also arise, but should likewise be modest.

As we have worked with this particular community over the years, we have come to realize how important ongoing, repeated, and regular community engagement are. In many of the families we serve, the head of the household is a single, working mother whose own lack of education has left her poorly equipped to understanding the true, transformative value of education. Sadly, many struggle to meet the challenges of bringing their own children to school and ensuring they remain in school. As a result, without regular community engagement, there is an enormous risk many children may drop out. To ensure that the children’s parents remain motivated and actively encouraged, we must be more active in daily life of the community.

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