Saludos de Ecuador! Our team of Program Directors arrived in-country on July 18, and it’s been a whirlwind ever since! We spent the first week exploring Ecuador’s capital city, Quito, with the help of our homestay familias and the Guayasamín Spanish school. We learned how to dance salsa, viewed Quito from 13,000 feet at the Teleférico, and got to know our new host city. 

Week two brought us to the Valle de los Chillos, where our year with Manna Project was kicked off with a bienvenida/despedida (welcome/farewell) party at Manna Project’s Centro. It seemed like the entire community came out to say goodbye to last year’s Program Directors and to meet the new team! 

The party was a great beginning to a productive week. We spent time getting to know our new neighbors, hosted a community meeting, held a fun and successful game night for kids in the community, and decided which programs we’ll be taking on this year. 

On Saturday evening, a community member invited us to his traditional Ecuadorian music and dance concert at the Casa de la Cultura in Quito, which we all thoroughly enjoyed. This week, the transition begins in earnest as the past year’s Program Directors depart for home. And so it begins!

by Kristin Sorenson, Ecuador Program Director