“En un mundo que se destruye, una juventud que construye” - „In einer Welt die sich zerstört, eine Jugend die aufbaut”
Under this motto, Ana María (Anita) Bonilla from Ambato (Ecuador) has been campaigning since 1980 to improve the educational opportunities of children from economically disadvantaged families in order to fight against child labor and against the oppression of indigenous peoples. She was 16 years old when she started her voluntary work at MECIT. Two years later, she is the first woman to be elected president of the movement and her encourages to fight on in order to reduce the glaring social and economic inequalities in the Ecuadorian society.
The first contact to El Salado
The founders of our association: Ingrid Kern, Cornelia Brandenstein-Nuding, Hans Stapperfenne and Gerhard Kuntz met Anita Bonilla, who has finished her studies in social science in 1991, and our partner organisation MECIT in 1992 during several stays with “Bread for the World” in Ecuador. They also make the acquaintance of César Tixilema, who as a teenager also actively supports the goals of the youth movement and is active in local politics. The focus of his political commitment is on his birthplace El Salado and the mostly indigenous municipality of Llangahua, to which the village belongs.
The idea of founding an association
In 1993, Anita and César have the opportunity to visit Germany. A long-term friendship emerges from that visit and common ideas for the support of educational institutions in rural areas soon develop. Gerhard, Hans, Ingrid and Cornelia are infected by the ambitious commitment of the indigenous youth movement MECIT, which fights for indigenous rights and aims to provide a self-determined future for youths in rural areas of the high Andes in Ecuador. The idea of founding an association slowly arises in order to support the commitment of Anita and César in El Salado and additionally to provide young people in Germany with the opportunity to spend a year in the village of El Salado, working closely with the association and the community of Llangahua. It is worth nothing, that this volunteer service does not substitute or count as professional development aid.
In August 2004, Gerhard Kuntz, Hans Stapperfenne, Ingrid Kern, and Cornelia Brandenstein-Nuding founded the association with its headquarters in Germany. A little later, Dorothea Eichel becomes a member of the board and supports the association's work by managing the finances. The focus of stupor mundi's commitment is the village of El Salado and the sourrounding community of Llangahua in the province of Tungurahua, Ecuador including the two ecuadorian members, Anita Bonilla and César Tixilema, who are members of the associotions to this day.
The building of a guest house
In 2005, the German-Ecuadorian cooperation was tasked with the construction of the “hospedería” in the village of El Salado. A guest house with three bedrooms, a large eat-in kitchen, bathrooms and a large entrance area was built by the village community according to the plans of a Mexican architect and offers the volunteers a comfortable home for the duration of their stay in El Salado, Llangahua and offers enough space for members of the community to engage in activities (reunions, workshops etc.) and strengthen the bond between the association and the community.