Children's, Youth &
Community Center

Humanity in harmony with the environment


Worldwide there are many children who receive the chance of a better life through SALEM. One such person is Maira from Ecuador, who came to SALEM Ecuador at the age of seven.

From April 2016 to September 2017 she completed an internship in SALEM-Kovahl and Stadtsteinach in Germany.

Now back in Ecuador, she has started studying social agriculture. In conversation she told us how SALEM Ecuador helped shape her life, and her hopes for the future.

We are very excited about what the future holds for Maira and exactly what she will do after graduation.


When and how did you first find out about SALEM Ecuador?
When I was six, I first heard about SALEM. At that time an aunt worked in SALEM.

When did you come to SALEM Ecuador?
I came to SALEM at the age of seven.

How did SALEM Ecuador or the people there influence your life?
In the last 15 years SALEM has influenced my life in a positive way and helped me to grow up. From the moment I came to SALEM, I met a big family who I learned a lot from. SALEM has offered me its unconditional help – in learning, health, housing, nutrition, etc. And above all, they have given me many values ​​that have helped me lead a healthy and peaceful life.

What is special about SALEM?
For me, the special thing about SALEM is that it always tries to solve problems with humanity and in harmony with the environment, with the aim that everything lives together in peace and harmony. SALEM is always ready to listen to and support their neighbours.

How was your internship in Germany? How do you imagine your future?
The time I spent in Germany was perfect. I learned a lot and grew up personally. In the future, I would like to work in my profession and support different projects that have a social connection.

How do you like Germany? What did you particularly notice and what is the biggest difference to Ecuador?
I really like everything about Germany. Of course you can learn a lot of different things in every country, because each place has its own special treasures. Germany seems very organized to me, they attach great importance to punctuality and a sense of responsibility.

What would the children and young people in SALEM Ecuador really enjoy at Christmas? What is urgently needed?
I think that the space that SALEM offers to the children and young people of our village is particularly important because they can spend their time there after school and enjoy the support of the SALEM staff.

I think it would be good if these spaces had even more materials for children of all ages, as these children and young people need a lot of support to grow physically and mentally. This allows them to better cope with the everyday dangers from outside – such as resisting alcohol and drugs.

How do you celebrate Christmas in SALEM Ecuador?
At the beginning of December we always organize a Christmas market in SALEM Ecuador. On this day, many people come from the community to support SALEM. Everyone helps and the money is used to buy small gifts for the children. At Christmas there is an afternoon of games, in the evening a festive meal, a Christmas tale and finally a gift for each child.

If you had on wish for Christmas, what would that be?
Of course, every person has many wishes. For me it’s especially important to be with the family at Christmas. A great future dream for me is to complete my studies.

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