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Elena's story

14/03/2017
Portada noticia

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Lack of knowledge is equal to a life full of limitations, especially in the most vulnerable countries, where there is less opportunity, less income and less progress that make that the future is bleak. Is by that that the school can change the destiny of these young.

The daily life of Elena* represented a threat to its security: between the business of drugs, gang activity and sexual and domestic violence, even leaving home to attend school meant risking his life. Elena, is 12 years old and used to live this reality in his hometown of Putumayo, Colombia. Two years ago, his father was killed and his family was forced to change the neighborhood to escape continued attacks.

Education becomes a low priority when you are just trying to survive.

"Conflict has really affected a lot of children and people," she says. "When I was living there, they were killing a lot of people and my mother was scared."

About seven months ago, her mother decided to send Elena to a boarding school in the jungle, where he received education and three meals a day for a small fraction of the cost of schooling in the city. For many families in this region impoverished of the country, the best option to give them to their children a future best is send them away.

But the jungle is not entirely safe. With only half day of school for keep to them students occupied and without supervision of them parents, them young run the risk of take bad decisions, as involved is in the violence or consume drugs, what perpetuates the same instability of which are escaping.

that's why Mercy Corps is working to make schools places of support so that the young people live, learn, and grow. We train and install caregivers to help them with the tasks, facilitate healthy activities and teach life skills that will help students to build a better future for themselves and their communities.

"Here are learning lots of things at the school of the city that do not teach us," said Elena. "My teacher teaches us to respect people that we respect and take care of our bodies. "We learn about the values, the way of working together and sharing '.

* Name changed for safety.