Ecuador has one of the lowest levels of GDP per head in South America. In 2015, 24% of the population was living in poverty, including 9% living in extreme poverty.
Levels of attendance at primary and secondary schools have been improving, but still around 34% of students do not complete secondary education. Non-attendance is typically highest among indigenous children, whose families are often among the poorest in Ecuador.
Young people drop out of education mainly for financial reasons: either students cannot afford the educational costs or they are obliged to go out to work to support themselves and their family. Help from the Condor Trust means that at least some of these students can complete their secondary education.