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Ecuador’s Aspiring Engineer



Alejandro, a 21-year-old from Ecuador, dreams of attending university to become an engineer. But his disapproving family and lack of financial support made the dream seem unreachable as his father was adamant about him becoming a police officer.

In order to pay for university, Alejandro began attending ‘Into Employment’ courses with hopes to get a job to save money. This programme, a complementary course to AflaTeen, helps young people become trained in the necessary skills to best present themselves in a job interview.

In Ecuador, this financial education programme is implemented by Children International with support of Citi and Aflatoun. But for Alejandro’s dad, this programme was a “waste of time” as Alejandro was already enrolled in police training courses.

One day, Alejandro was given an ultimatum: if he did not go to the police course, he would have to move out of his parents’ house. Alejandro, who was financially dependent on his family, could not move out, so he stayed with hopes that his father would change his mind.

At the beginning of the ‘Into Employment’ courses, Alejandro’s dad refused to pay for the bus ticket for him to attend. But slowly, Alejandro’s dad began to come around. Alejandro convinced his dad attending the courses could be a good idea for his future—regardless of the occupation.

Alejandro was able to finish the Into Employment courses with “great effort.” Three days after finishing the programme, he was offered a job working in the cafeteria at “Las Quesadillas de San Juan.”

He is now happy with his work, and it has helped him become more responsible and able to contribute to his family’s income. Because of the responsibility Alejandro has shown, little by little, Alejandro’s father is starting to change his mind. His father respects his decisions and they have managed to have a better relationship.

“I felt so happy to for the first time be able to pay to a trip to the zoo with my parents and younger brother,” — Alejandro said while his eyes filled with tears.

Even though Alejandro is happy with his new job, his dreams of university are still in sight. Every $100 of his $400 salary he saves towards his university fund.

To read more about Aflatoun’s young and inspiring entrepreneurs, visit our ‘Impact’ page.