Helping Youth in Ecuador

In Quito, Ecuador, Lions Clubs International Foundation’s Lions Quest program helps provide a sense of community and belonging to youth at the Colegio Aleman Quito school.

Children perform puppet show as part of Lions QuestImplemented in 110 countries, Lions Quest offers a comprehensive and coordinated approach to prevention in schools, and helps teachers develop the skills to prevent risky behaviors in children while cultivating positive social behaviors.

The Colegio Aleman School has been running Lions Quest since first implementing it in the 2014-2015 school year. Through social- and emotional learning, the program strengthens key social and personal skills and prevents behavior that is harmful to children and others. Lions Quest encourages self-awareness and self-efficacy so that children and young people can make positive decisions.

“At Lions Quest, I learned that all my friends should be part of a team. They all help each other,” says Ivanna, a student at Colegio Aleman.

Isaac Abad Crespo, past council chairperson and District G-1 Lions Quest chairperson, discovered the program 12 years ago and helped the school adopt the program. In 2019, a US$15,000 LCIF Community Partnership Grant was awarded to the District G-1 to help the Colegio Aleman school pilot the newest edition of the program and expand Lions Quest activitiesGirl who is part of Lions Quest program smiles at the school, adding Skills for Adolescence.

The program helps children and adults manage emotions, set and achieve goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.

“I think that for us parents, it is an important tool that helps in the socio-emotional development of our children,” says Carolina Dominguez, a parent. “My children use many strategies from Lions Quest to talk and resolve conflicts.”

Gabriela Reyes, a teacher at the school and Lions Quest coordinator, said she noticed a difference in children’s listening between ages eight and nine. For example, several children gave examples of different situations in which they did not feel heard—especially at home. One girl said she realized that she didn’t listen in the right way to her parents when they wanted to
talk to her, Reyes says.

Kids sit together on couch“If you start working with children on the acquisition of social and emotional skills at an early age, I believe that we will have children who positively impact the community to which they belong,” Reyes says.

Reyes and Abad are looking forward to seeing the continued impact that the program has on youth. “Our motto is to serve. I think one of the best ways to serve our community is to adopt this program, because you can see extraordinary results in the children and youth. And they are our future,” Abad said.

Learn more about how LCIF is helping children and schools through the Lions Quest program: