Archive for February, 2010


Leaving for Ecuador Today

   Posted by: Dean White    in Ecuador

Today I will be leaving to Ecuador!  Heading to Quito, which is the capital.

I don’t know much about what I will experience but I do know this:


To deliver shoe boxes that are filled with toys, supplies and hard candy to children who live in primitive villages that are not accessible by plane.  The shoe boxes were part of a project that churches participated in throughout the country called Operation Christmas Child. During December each year, churches and other organizations pass out shoe boxes and people fill them and bring them back to the collection centers.  About 10 million shoe boxes are collected each year and then distributed throughout the world to about 100 countries.  Operation Christmas Child is part of Samaritan’s Purse, one of the most successful relief organizations in the world.  The comment has been said many times, “You want to give to a trusted organization where your money will make a difference …then give to Samaritan’s Purse.”

Because Samaritan’s Purse has already made contacts in countries throughout the world through delivering ‘Christmas’ gifts, they are often one of the first organized in response when a natural disaster hits like the earthquake in Chile this past week or the earthquake in Haiti.  Here is a statement from the organizations website, “Samaritan’s Purse is a nondenominational evangelical Christian organization providing spiritual and physical aid to hurting people around the world. Since 1970, Samaritan’s Purse has helped meet needs of people who are victims of war, poverty, natural disasters, disease, and famine with the purpose of sharing God’s love through His Son, Jesus Christ.”

What I know about Ecuador:

Ecuador is right on the equator and hence where it got its name.  The Galapagos Islands (of which I will not be going) are located in Ecuador and Quito was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in the 1970s for having the best preserved and least altered historic center in Latin America. The country has many diverse species making Ecuador one of the seventeen mega-diverse countries in the world. The new constitution of 2008 is the first in the world to recognize legally enforceable Rights of Nature, or ecosystem rights.  About 38.3% of the people live below the poverty line.

What may happen:

Here is a story of one of the previous trips:

“Many of the children we visit are in villages where airplanes cannot land. One such place is the Amazon rain-forest in Ecuador. Last year, Samaritan’s Purse workers traveled four hours up the Rio Napo River with a motor canoe loaded with gift-filled shoe boxes for children in a primitive tribe in the rain-forest. This tribe had once been savage warriors.

The river was flooded and swift, but the Samaritan’s Purse workers docked the canoe and began their work. While the workers where delivering the shoe boxes, the fierce current slammed a big floating log into their canoe and sank it –right after they had unloaded all the shoe boxes!”


Needless to say I am extremely excited about the adventure.  For some reason, I am not at all worried about the 9K+ elevation, high humidity, hard to breathe air, potential jungle fever, amazon forest, aftershocks from the Chile earthquake or the bird size mosquitoes I may encounter.  I am solely excited to see the smiles of the little children who will be overjoyed receiving their gift.  Day in and day out, they live in slums, forgotten streets, dirt villages, diseased filled garbage dumps … but for a moment they will feel like kings.