The average real minimum wage in Latin America has fallen by up to 35% since 1980
Labor is often the only asset the poor can use to improve their well-being
A 10% INCREASE IN AVERAGE INCOME REDUCES A COUNTRY’S POVERTY RATE BY 20-30%
- Underemployment in Ecuador is 52.5%
- 70% of rural Ecuadorians live in poverty
- 11.6% of women are unable to find work
- Cost of loaf of bread $1.43
- Farm workers earn $3/day; basic necessities for a family of four: $9.60
- Adult English
- Children’s English
- Library and Community Center
- Small Business Development
- Teen Center
- 76% of population lives on > $2/day
- Second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere
- A doctor earns $544/month
- Price of a meal at McDonalds: $5.00
- A teacher earns around $205 a month
- English Vocational Training
- Youth Medical Career Education
Ecuador Livelihood Programs
English fluency opens a world of opportunities in Ecuador, where English education is too expensive for the low-income communities who need it most. Manna Project’s high quality, affordable English classes help students thrive. Small class sizes, strong student/teacher relationships and supplemental practice sessions result in high proficiency. Class participants gain self-confidence and sharpened mental acuity, and many graduate go on to obtain well-paying jobs.
Few schools offer comprehensive English language tuition. Where classes do exist, subject material is frequently incorrect. Private English education is expensive and out of reach for low-income families, yet English fluency is a valuable skill in Ecuador’s job market. MPI Ecuador meets the huge demand for high-quality, affordable English language instruction from native-speaking teachers.
The Chillos Valley is home to some of the greatest wealth disparity in the region. Many lack basic education, sanitation, and utility coverage. At Manna Project's Community Center, kids can play, learn and read; teens can play video games, watch movies, read and hang out; and adults can pursue continued education through interactive workshops and internet access.
Multiple studies have shown that children and adults who read do better in school or work. Reading reduces stress, increases focus, and improves analytical thinking, vocabulary, memory and writing skills. Manna Project's library is the first of its kind in the Chillos Valley and has a full range of books, games, puzzles and other intellectually stimulating activities for all ages.
Though Ecuador's economy is flourishing, the poorest sector of the population is unable to take part in the growth due to limited resources and education. The Small Business Development Program provides basic professional skills in business development, accounting and money management. Participants have access to resources to develop and implement specific, individualized strategies for success.
The Teen Center is a safe, dynamic drug- and alcohol-free zone exclusively for teens ages 12-19. Each month the Teen Center serves a core group of 50+ teens from underprivileged communities in the Chillos Valley. Participants in challenging circumstances find a listening ear, homework help, movie nights and outings.
Nicaragua Livelihood Programs
Students hone their English skills in Advanced English to fully prepare themselves for the employment opportunities available to English speakers in Nicaragua. Having mastered a large amount of knowledge in Levels 1 through 4, students enter Level 5, where the focus is on practicing what they have learned through various activities including projects, competitions, games, and more. Students who graduate from Level 5 English speak, comprehend, read, and write in English at a highly advanced or fluent level. Many of our students go on to obtain employment based on their English English-speaking skills.
In a country with very limited employment opportunities, learning English is one of the very best ways for Nicaraguans to obtain steady, quality employment to support themselves and their families. Our Beginner English classes consist of Levels 1 and 2, where large numbers of students learn the essentials of the English language. This includes basic vocabulary and grammar, and practice in speaking, reading, writing, and comprehending English. For both children and adults, the path to English fluency begins here.
One of the premier job opportunities for English-speakers in Nicaragua is to work for an English language call center. While there are many openings, few are qualified. MPI offers a course to train students in skills needed by local call centers. The end result of the course is that students possess the skills needed to successfully apply for and obtain employment at a local call center, thereby vastly improving the livelihoods of both themselves and their families.
Opportunities abound in Nicaragua for English speakers, and our English program prepares community members to take advantage of these opportunities to improve their financial stability. Having learned the basics of the English language, students enter Intermediate English, which consists of Levels 3 and 4. In these classes, students learn advanced details of the language, and fully transition over to hearing and speaking English exclusively during class. Once students finish Intermediate English, they speak English at an advanced level.
The Youth Medical Career Education program, called Generation, prepares students ages 14-18 interested in a career in the health professions. Through participation in interactive classes, students learn about healthcare, biological, and medical topics. Students also receive information on university and career options available in fields such as medicine, nursing, and pharmacy. Following completion of the course, students gain additional skills by volunteering in the Cedro Galán Clinic.
"In my house there are four people - my grandma, my aunt, my cousin and me. Neither my grandma or aunt work, so I need to study hard so I can work as a doctor to support my family."
- Genesis, 18
Resident of Cedro Galán, Nicaragua
"Economic growth is the most powerful instrument for reducing poverty and improving the quality of life in developing countries."
- Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, Building Jobs and Prosperity in Developing Countries