Dream Factory Community Sponsors
Yalic & Elsa Maricela

AlliancExchange’s proceeds from the Dream Factory Community’s Silent Auction at last year’s Conference & Retreat were used to provide secondary school scholarships for Yalic and Elsa Maricela. This year we’d like to raise even more money so that we can continue to support these two young women and offer another young woman a scholarship beginning in the 2010-11 academic year.

Carol, Yalic & Elsa Maricela
Carol Madsen, Elsa Maricela, and Yalic

Both young women attended the ice cream social the AlliancExchange travelers hosted for the Rainforest Scholars in our hotel’s dining area in Tena, Ecuador on Monday evening, January 11, 2010. 

Yalic came to the social event with her parents.  At 12 years of age, she is too young to travel on her own.  Yalic is in the 9th grade this year and is doing well.  She is growing into a young lady.  The youngest of 8 children, her schooling has been primarily “in town.”  Her mom is ill, and although mobile, she looks much older than her years.  The cause of her illness is unknown, but treatment and medicines have been a financial strain on the family and have necessitated that they live in the town of Archidona.

Elsa Maricela is 23 years old and is in the 11th grade. (In Ecuador there are 3 years of middle school and 3 years of high school, so Elsa has two more full years before she completes high school.). A young widow with 2 children (her husband was killed in a traffic accident), Elsa Maricela attends school on the weekends in an accelerated program which accommodates both older students as well as those who cannot live away from home all week long. Elsa too is from a large family and completing a secondary school education was not “in the cards” for her. However, after the death of her husband and a return home to live with her parents, she decided to continue her education. Elsa’s story has a happy ending. Not only is she successfully pursuing a high school education, but she recently married the elementary school teacher in her village and they are expecting their first child. Elsa looks very good and is thriving in school and in her new relationship.

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