Migrating, an opportunity to improve the quality of life and build a community without borders
José Rodríguez, a graduate in restoration of movable and immovable cultural heritage, was born in the state of Falcón, in the northwest of Venezuela. He arrived in Ecuador on 11 May 2019, a day that, like every person forced to migrate, he remembers very well. That's the day he, along with his family, entered an unknown world.
As soon as he set foot on Ecuadorian soil, José did not hesitate for a minute to form a connection in order to work. He smiles as he remembers when, together with his wife, he managed to raise a little money to prepare the popular “quesillo”, a Venezuelan dessert that has become the favorite of his neighbors. With its sweet scent, the quesillo proved to be a winning strategy to start overcoming the obstacles of the new life.
When José recalls his experiences, he talks about his Ecuadorian friends who helped him to adapt to the new context in which he had to live. With honesty and commitment he was gaining the trust of his community in the Yaruquíparish, in the canton of Quito, province of Pichincha.
José sees himself as a man who knows how to take advantage of opportunities, and it was thus that shortly after his arrival in Ecuador he started working on a garlic plantation, where he learned to manage the cultivation cycle in all its phases, from sowing to harvesting.
After the sad passing of the man who was in charge of the plantation, José worried that his own agriculture adventure would also come to an end. Instead, just then his Ecuadorian friends encouraged him to take the initiative and find his own way in the cultivation of garlic. With no tools or land of his own, José began offering his services to other plantations. Little by little he was thus able to put aside the first useful savings to invest to make his dream come true. Today, through agriculture, José employs other people, in particular women who have suffered gender violence and people in rehabilitation programs for alcohol and drug addiction. This makes him feel very proud.
His commitment to do things right, to focus on his goals with strategic planning and to always think about the positive impact on his community, were key moves for his socio-economic integration in the host country, Ecuador.
Migrating has allowed José to improve his quality of life and that of those around him.
Through collaboration, they are all building a community without borders.
Currently, José, together with 120 entrepreneurs from the cities of Quito and Manta, participates in the processes of strengthening the management of entrepreneurship of the Integra Program, funded by the European Union and implemented by CISP in partnership with Ayuda en Acción and HIAS.