Education during the COVID-19 pandemic
During the pandemic, SALEM Ecuador worked with families virtually. The engaging videos about diverse activities such as communal gardens, cooking recipes, music, and reasoning exercises served to strengthen family relationships.
On September 7th, after preparing a biosafety protocol, we started working in person, due to the need to support the children and their educational necessities.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a global recession in all fields, leading to a large number of children that have stopped attending classes. In Ecuador, 75% of homes experienced a reduction in their income due to measures taken by the State and 63% of children do not attend school due to the lack of income at home.
In the educational field the measure adopted due to the crisis was the suspension of in-person classes, leading to new educational experiences such as virtual classes. In the Mindo parish, a large amount of children have lost interest in their schooling or their education is declining. This is due to the precarious education, deficiencies in internet access, and a lack of proper communication with teachers. Due to this, the imminent threat of children abandoning their education worries SALEM.
Another factor that leads to this decline in education is the large amount of parents with little to no education, a lack of time, insufficient knowledge in managing technology, no internet access, and sensitive problems, such as economic worries, proper nutrition, work, and health.
“Carlos is a 14 year old teenager that lives with his 45 year old mother. From Monday to Friday he needs to connect to sessions online and do his homework. His time is limited because he needs to use his mother’s phone, the same one he shares with three siblings. On top of this he helps his siblings with their homework since his mom does not know how to read or write.”
Many other children at SALEM share similar experiences to Carlos’. This is why the organization has taken the initiative to open its’ doors and continue to offer healthy meals, exercises to develop body awareness, reasoning, written expression, oral language, values, and offer support to families and individuals.
The support that SALEM Ecuador has offered allows for families to strengthen their relationships and face the changes brought upon by the pandemic.