Ecuador. With UNICEF, to protect young migrants and refugees
26-10-2021 | di COOPI

Ecuador. With UNICEF, to protect young migrants and refugees

In the framework of the project "Improved conditions of access to protection and security for children and adolescents in the context of human mobility and their families in transit and/or residing in Ecuador - PHASE 2", COOPI – Cooperazione Internazionale conducts several protection and WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) actions in the country, together with UNICEF. This project is supported by the Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO) and the Bureau of Population, Refugee and Migration (BPRM) of the United States for the health and environmental area.

So, in the provinces of Sucumbíos, Carchi, Manabí, Guayas and El Oro, COOPI has signed an agreement with the National Council for Equality in Human Mobility (CNIMH in Spanish) to strengthen the structure of the Canton Councils and Commissions for the Protection of Rights, in order to provide quality services to vulnerable groups of the population in situations of human mobility.

Activities are carried out with migrant and refugee adolescents and host communities to promote social integration through the technique of Theatre of the Oppressed. This technique, developed by Augusto Boal in the 1960s in Latin America, is based on the concept that "the whole body thinks", so beneficiaries learn, through a differentiated approach, to deal with their own problems and develop their own skills.

In the WASH sector, COOPI is already carrying out activities to promote health, proper hygiene and hand washing, with a particular focus on children in the provinces of Sucumbíos, Carchi, Esmeraldas, Manabí, Guayas and El Oro. These activities are carried out with the "learning by doing" technique, using portable sinks and providing essential materials for WASH and COVID-19 prevention.

In addition, COOPI and UNICEF continue by offering legal advice on issues related to the regularisation of the population in human mobility, protection and gender-based violence (GBV) courses, strengthening the capacities of local rights protection systems in human rights-based urban planning, and accompanying vulnerable cases for regularisation with financial support.


COOPI in Ecuador currently co-leads with UNICEF the national child protection sub-group of the Working Group for Refugees and Migrants (GTRM in Spanish) and, in the province of Guayas, collaborates in the management of the child protection sub-directorate with Aldeas Infantiles. Finally, COOPI provides technical support to the case identification and analysis tables in the six provinces where the project is present.