Manuel lives and works in San Francisco de Quito, the capital city of Ecuador. Most commonly called Quito, the city is also known as “The Light of America” because it was the site of the first uprising against the Spanish and as the “Middle of the World,” because it straddles the equator. Quito is famous for the nearby active volcano Pichincha, its soaring altitude of 9,200 feet, and its beautiful downtown historical district, declared the first UNESCO Heritage Site in 1978.
Manuel is a hard-working 40-year-old entrepreneur. He lives with his two daughters and wife Maria (his younger daughter is in the above photo). For two years, Manuel has sold scrap-metal for a living. The entire family helps out with Manuel's scrap-metal business. He and Maria both are engaged in the work and occasionally his daughters help him with pick-ups. He's extremely busy in Quito, working 8 hours a day, Monday through Friday, and gathering the many disposable items that people leave on the street. He learned the business of selling scrap metal from former co-workers when he was a docksman (longshoreman).
About Fundación AlternativaFundación Alternativa encourages entrepreneurship and provides sustainable financial and non-financial services that promote social and economic development in Ecuador. The organization focuses on serving poor and excluded populations through analysis of clients' living conditions and by providing business training and other support services in urban, rural and marginalized parts of the country.
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