The Manitoba to Ecuador Project continues to support young adults in furthering their education and supporting their communities.

Mark Reimer from Steinbach started the project in 2011 to provide English skills to young Ecuadorians, encouraging them to graduate high school and continue their education.

He’s so excited to report that this project helped two young women graduate on November 19th with nursing degrees.

“And it’s so absolutely heartwarming because these two women, they are angels on the face of the earth,” Reimer says. “And every person they will care for will feel the presence of an angel around them.”

Alex is another student supported by the project.

He is studying at Providence College with a goal of returning to Puerto Lopez as an English teacher.

When Reimer speaks about this young man, his eyes light up as tears begin to form.

“I’ve known him since he was nine,” says Reimer. “I’ve seen him develop a heart of service in those 10 years since I’ve known him. He never does anything before he looks after those around him.”

Providence offered Alex a full scholarship and Reimer is helping Alex raise enough money to cover the cost of his books.

Alex’s story is about more than just teaching English.

“He’ll be the most qualified English teacher when he gets back to Ecuador,” Reimer says, proudly. “English is in great demand, not just in Ecuador, it’s all over the place.”

This means Alex could get a teaching job anywhere. But he is determined to return to his home country and support his family.

“He knows that because he has this opportunity to study in Canada, he’s going to be the person that his parents look to as their life insurance policy, as their retirement plan,” Reimer explains. “And he embraces that.”

Alex believes opportunity doesn’t come without responsibility, Reimer adds. He says this young man is embracing the responsibility.

Listening to Reimer speak about the people he has met through the Manitoba to Ecuador Project, it is easy to understand that he is greatly impacted by the people he has set out to support.

The Steinbach man is inspired by the young people who are eager to work hard to provide a better life for those around them, and he is excited to have any small part in the great things they are accomplishing.

“I’ve got a long list of people in Puerto Lopez; I’ll do anything for them. I'll work as hard as I can, wherever I can, to walk alongside them,” says Reimer.

He is also fueled by the outpouring of support from people in Manitoba.

Reimer says he has been contacted by people who are looking for ways to support people in Puerto Lopez, and that steady compassion is heartwarming.

“I marvel, time and again, at the generosity, the good-heartedness of people here,” Reimer says. “Their willingness to listen to stories and then to reach out and do something. That’s beautiful.”

To learn more about supporting the Manitoba to Ecuador Project, you can contact Mark Reimer via email or cell phone at 204-381-3490.


Written by Judy Peters.