Sports for Life
About twenty years ago, Tonchigue was a quiet fishing village; of humble but happy people, sustaining themselves with the fruits of the sea. Over the years, drug use became commonplace, especially among young people.
As Fundación Raiz Ecuador, we decided to do something to help young people stay away from drugs. We discovered that there was an existing basketball team formed by children from this community. This team received support for several years from the Parochial Board. After a short time, the budget of the Parish Board was cut and they couldn’t guarantee a salary for the coach. The children of Tonchigüe dream of becoming great basketball players. They are very passionate about the sport and the possibility of the team closing was a terrible blow for them.
So we decided to find a solution and support the team.We developed a long-term sports program that integrates social work for children and youth involved. The youth to help pick up garbage, care for the elderly, and receive educational support after training.
Fundación Raíz, wants to help the Parish Council of Tonchigüe, so that the team can grow and expand the practices and trainings to other communities; Today, about 100 children attend basketball practices every day.
Fundación Raíz, recognizes that the disciplined practice of sport, in our coastal populations, is one of the most effective and wonderful ways to motivate young people to stop using drugs, a problem that in recent years has strongly affected coastal Ecuadorian towns.
We are working to get more support, to keep this dream alive and take it to the next level. We hope to establish a regional basketball league and develop other sports programs and thus have as many children on the courts as possible.