Cotacachi / Cotacachi / Cotacachi Indigenous / Ecuador Culture

4th Annual Cotacachi Children’s Olympics

The 4th annual Cotacachi Olympics summer program for indigenous children, ages 10 – 12, will begin at 8 a.m. this Saturday, Sept. 3, in the parking lot outside the comisariato on Calle Bolivar.

This program is the dream of Jorge Quilimbaqui, an indigenous builder/developer, who approached the municipality seven years ago with the idea.

He offered to pay for all the food and prizes connected to the event if the municipality would help him with the remainder of the costs.
They put him off for three years, so four years ago he decided to sponsor and pay for the  events himself, with the assistance of a few local donors such as Pro-Ecuador.

Jorge paid us a visit today, arriving at our apartment with an excited grin on his face and a solicitation letter in his hand.  We gladly wrote him a check and said yes to his request for our help in finding more support for the Olympics.

To read Jorge’s inspiring biography, click here.

Read our blog covering the 2nd Cotacachi Olympics, which took place in 2009.

Jorge conceived of this idea as a recreational opportunity for the indigenous children of the area who do not have the advantages and diversions that other children have in the summer.  To offer them an exciting, competitive and recreational activity, he came up with the idea of the Olympics and the event has been a great success in past years.

For the most part, these children come from very poor families, so an event like this is extremely special for them.   Each participant will be given a uniform specific to their community, a medal of participation, (the top 3 winners in each event will get a special medallion), and a meal after the event.

Jorge even hired a trainer who has been visiting the 13 communities that will be participating in this year’s Olympics.  The trainer worked with the children for two months this summer.  Each year, the winning community gets a special prize.  In previous years, it was a computer.  This year, he will provide a bull to the winning team’s village.

As you can imagine, this event costs a great deal of money.  Jorge is asking the members of the community to assist in raising $6500 required for this year’s event. He is circulating a letter to friends and acquaintances in the area.  Through this blog, we are also soliciting funds to help him pay for the Olympics.  Jorge will cover whatever costs are not raised  through other donations.

Anyone interested in supporting this very worthy cause, from their hearts, can do so in one of four ways:
1.  Contact Jorge’s Cotacachi office  at:  06 291-5873

2.  Stop by his Cotacachi hotel, Hotel Sumac Huasy, at Juan Montalvo 109 y Pedro Moncayo, and leave their contribution with his secretary, Karla.

3.  Write to us at to make a deposit to Jorge’s bank account and we will provide his bank account number.

4.  If you live in Cotacachi, come by the games this Saturday and give your donation to Jorge in person.

Jorge emphasized that he wants people to contribute from their hearts, not for any political reason or sense of obligation.  He is specific in not asking the political structure of the community for support, as he wants this to be a purely humanitarian effort.

After the 8 a.m. Saturday opening festivities and parade, complete with a flaming torch, this exciting and very worthwhile event will take place around 9 a.m. in the Francisco Espinosa Stadium, the large football stadium off Diez de Agosto near the red metal sculpture.

After prayer led by a local priest, the games will begin.  Join Jorge and the nearly 200 kids as they compete in 6 events, including a 60-meter dash, 2400-meter run,  called a resistencia, a 6-person, 400-meter relay, javelin-throw and a long jump, and a speed walk once around the track.

This is a heart-warming event created and sponsored by a person who desires to give back to the community, to the children.



  1. Cody Hamilton says:

    Thank you for responding, Linda. I appreciate having the name of the Las Lomas school and will continue to read more about the community on your website. Really looking forward to seeing Cotacachi in 2 months! Cody

  2. Cody Hamilton says:

    Dear Linda, I have just come across your blog postings for Cotacachi. Would you be able to share the email address of your blog or that of any other expat friends living in Cotacachi? My husband and I are moving to Ecuador in Nov. Plans were to settle in Cuenca, but recently have discovered information about the town and area of Cotacachi and we plan to come visit in late Nov. I would like to volunteer at a local school and be part of my community so thought being able to read some local blogs and correspond with any willing Cotacachi residents would be a great help. Many thanks! Cody Hamilton (Denver, Co)

    • Come on down and check things out once you get here. You’ll find plenty of people willing to talk to you and offer help. We don’t hook people up with expats on our site and face-to-face communication is probably best. There are many schools you can volunteer your services at. Las Lomas is a fine private school in Cotacachi. There are articles about it on our site if you just use our search engine to find them. We can give you contact info for the school’s principal when you get here.

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