Timeline

2016

International

  • Coordinated volunteer effort from Chicago to travel to Jama and help with building as part of earthquake relief
  • Workshop of Physical and Occupational Therapists and healthcare students at UNEMI entitled the Management of the Child with Cerebral Palsy
  • Conference presentation on Physical Therapy as a career opportunity at UNEMI
  • Dr. Cech met with UNEMI regarding PT curriculum submission for government approval
  • In April a team of three travelled to San Cristobal Island of the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador to conduct a firefighter and disability community needs assessment
  • Working with volunteers in coastal area of Ecuador in monitoring needs resulting from earthquake
  • Small gift donations sent periodically to school age children in Ecuador
  • Coordinated efforts for volunteer to provide assistance in Canar for three months

Domestic

  • Participated at State of Indiana Health & Disability Summit
  • Engaged in increasing awareness of creating environments conducive to all: accessible infrastructure, planning events, trails, waterways in Northwest Indiana
  • Planned, collaborated with City of Gary Parks and Northwest Indiana Paddling Association in raising funds and install an ADA Launch in City of Gary Marquette Lagoon
  • June, 2016 dedication of Marquette Park Lagoon ADA Launch and start of weekly sunset community paddle
  • Participated in dedication and ribbon cutting of Hobart ADA Launch
  • Promoting the creation of accessible gardens, Farmer’s Market

2015

International

  • A team of six from Chicagoland area joined local volunteers in Guayas and Manabi: lectured in Guayaquil to an audience of Disability professionals of MIES, conducted a follow-up visit to a residential facility of persons with disabilities in Milagro; met with persons with disabilities in communities of Bucay, Manta, Montecristi
  • Visited land and countryside for concept of developing Exploration Institute
  • Travelled to Salina and met with Mayor, visited a rehabilitation facility, day care enter and toured city and photographed concerns pertinent to infrastructure access along the ocean front
  • Sponsored Social Enterprise for Non-Profits and Businesses in Chicago
  • Meeting with new Consulate General of Ecuador
  • Participated in kick off of Project HopeBar in Atlanta
  • Hosted Mr. Pedro Pacheco, teacher and President of CC-Ecuador, from Naranjal for three weeks: visited Chicago and Indiana elementary schools, an University, increased awareness in disability and leadership development, received training from our Atlanta team on Project Hope.
  • Meeting held in Ecuador with Dr. Cech of Midwestern University, CC-Ecuador, and UNEMI in planning for career in Physical Therapy
  • 30 children in Manta received HopeBlend powder for a period of six months, pre and post surgery
  • Team of two, Dr. Cech and James Holmes traveled to Manta, provided pre and post surgical physical therapy management for parents and therapists by invitation CC- Manabi, Fundacion Rios de Agua Viva and Patronato de Amparo Social

Domestic

  • Participated in first ADA Launch installation in City of Michigan, Indiana
  • Actively raising awareness on accessibility for all and inclusion in City of Gary through Neighborhood Spotlight Infrastructure and Transportation Committee, serving as member of Steering Committee of Miller Spotlight.
  • Invited to serve as Chair of City of Gary Barrier Free Beach 2020 Planning Committee
  • Meeting with Mayor of City of Gary to discuss areas of concern to Disability Community

2014

  • Commenced work with Project Hope to eradicate malnutrition
  • Coordinated a volunteer team of 14 for a mission in Milagro, Bucay, Alausi, Canar and Guayaquil. Team began work at a housing community of families with Persons with Disabilities, Voluntad de Dios.Drs. Guerrero, Carrillo with dental aides worked provided dental care. Dr. Cech worked in evaluating and seeing the physical needs of children and adults. Walkers, orthotics, crutches, and wheelchairs were made available, recommended or adjustments made where appropriate. The Occupational Therapy through the leadership of Dr. Kovic visited all the units in the residential facility, met the individual(s) with disability and family members, provided recommendations to best accommodate space to meet the needs of all.Dr. Fouts lectured at the University of Milagro on the Role of Gliconutrients in Integrative Medicine.Meetings were held with the Rector and staff of the Health Sciences Department of UNEMI, discussied status of the Social Work Exchange Program, development of Physical and Occupational Therapy Specialties. Also had opportunity to meet with Lions Clubs and other local organizations.In saying goodbye to Milagro, Volunteers were given a small keepsake. Somos was given clothing to distribute to those most in need. A child experiencing seizures was given two containers of Ambrotose to be given under supervision by a volunteer and monitoring by her physician.Visited Bucay where a community gathering and a meeting with the Mayor of Bucay was scheduled. The Mayor agreed to participate in a nutritional supplement program with one-hundred children. A gift of nineteen wheelchairs made possible through our partnership with Free Wheelchair Mission was presented. All in attendance were given a piece of jewelry or some type of memento of our team visit.Travelled to Alausi to meet with volunteers of Encuentro Medico de Alausi where medical, dental, physical and occupational therapy evaluations were conducted. Nutritional Powder supplement for 500 children was gifted. Wheelchairs provided.Team of six travelled to Canar, Cuenca with final meetings with nonprofit organization held in Guayaquil.
  • Shipped and Distributed 440 wheelchairs through Cc-Ecuador and 35 Lions Clubs
  • Shipped and Distributed 1100 wheelchairs to Panama
  • Delegation from Ecuador and Panama participated at MannaFest in Dallas and received a one day training in the Role of Glicobiology in Integrative Medicine.

2013

  • Participated in training mission to Milagro, Ecuador with Dominican University Graduate School of Social Work to launch program at UNEMI, State University of Milagro
  • Worked with UNEMI and Dr. Mark Kovic and Dr. Donna Cech of Midwestern University to develop a new program in Therapies in Rehabilitation to be launched in Fall, 2013
  • Worked with UNEMI and Lions Club of Milagro to oversee the distribution of 440 wheelchairs by 16 Lion Clubs and NGOs in Ecuador
  • A team seven participated in volunteer travel mission to Manabi and Guayas, Ecuador, including Physical and Occupational Therapies.
  • Participated in the 6th Annual Global Expo presented by WBEZ and UIC Social Justice Initiative
  • Developed partnership with Give for Real Mannatech, a MannaRelief Nutritional Supplement Program
  • A Six month pilot nutritional program with 37 children in Manabi a success
  • Delivered a six month supply of nutritional supplement, Phytoblend, to 1000 children in Manabi, Guayas and Canar.
  • Planned with FWM for a shipment of wheelchairs to Panama
  • Delivered and Distributed container of 550 wheelchairs to Panama
  •  Participated in speaking engagement at Midwestern University, OT Department
  • Established partnership with www.LoveShopGive.com as a fundraising source of CCI
  • Planned and Received a 15 member Delegation from Manabi and Guayas, Ecuador
  • A team of seven presented at an Accessibility and Universal Design Conference in Guayaquil, Ecuador.

2012

  • Worked with Free Wheelchair Mission, FWM, in the shipment of 440 wheelchairs to be distributed in Ecuador
  • Coordinated and executed a volunteer travel mission to Ecuador
  • Worked with UNEMI and Dominican University to establish a Memorandum of Understanding to start a social work and community development program
  • Welcome visit  of UNEMI to DU in River Forest, Illinois.  Participated in dialogues and planning
  • Visit of UNEMI to Midwestern University
  • Participated in the 5th Annual Global Expo with WBEZ at UIC Forum
  • 2011

  • In January travelled to Guayas and Manabi, Ecuador with Nuestros Pequenos Hermanos, and Dominican University, met with various communities and organizations regarding locations for the development of a homeless shelter for children.
  • Met with staff of the Office of the Vice-President of Ecuador on Disability issues
  • Provided dental equipment and supplies to start five dental clinics along the coastal area of Ecuador
  • Travel mission June 2011:
  • Provided dental care and therapeutic services in Posorja
  • Donated microscopes and other supplies
  • Conducted disability conference to 232 government and non-government organizations, leaders on disability, and lectured at two elementary schools on Sexual Abuse Prevention.
  • Participated at ribbon cutting of dental clinic in Ayampe, visited dental clinic in Jama. Donated supplies and instruments to both clinics
  • Travelled to Costa Rica in support of two grantees: Proyecto Daniel and La Oruguita, and met with other groups on disability issues
  • Container of 550 wheelchairs distributed throughout Ecuador including the Galapagos Islands
  • Acquired equipment and support for four youth with severe disabilities living in Costa Rica, Ecuador and Panama
  • Visited by a Delegation from Panama with an interest in Disability and the Arts: arranged to meet with various organizations including Access Living, Victory Gardens Theatre
  • Visited by a Delegation from Naranjal, Ecuador; met with Town of Cicero officials, visited a recycling facility, and Lambs Farm
  • Participated at the 2011 Global Activism Expo presented by Chicago Public Radio
  • Served as Key note speaker at St. Norbert University in Wisconsin at the Phenomenal Woman Conference
  • Honored by Chicago Foundation for Women with the Impact Award
  • Chicago Magazine named Zully JF Alvarado Chicagoan of the Year for 2011
  • Received $6,500 from Indima Foundation for Costa Rica Projects
  • Manaaki Foundation $5,000 Grant for Mobile Dental Clinic
  • Applied for and received Google Grant Ad Award
  • Formed Volunteer Creative Team to re-design Website
  • We helped establish a beautician vocational program in Las Tunas, Province of Manabi.  Donated start up equipment.  Over 70 persons have participated in the program since July.
  • 2010

    • May 24 – 31:
    • Travelled with NPHI, Dominican University to the Andes and the Coast of Ecuador on a fact finding mission
    • June 24 – July 5, 2010:
    • Mission to coastal area of Ecuador, served more than 800 children
    • Served as a Delegate to the National Council on Disability Summit in Washington DC
    • Obtained and shipped five fully equipped dental chairs to Ecuador.  Worked with communities to design and establish clinics in Ayampe, Jama and other communities
  • 2009

    • A team of firefighters from Chicago and Chile traveled to the Galapagos Islands to provide training for local volunteers
    • A team (including a student from Northwestern University) joined students of the University of Agronomy in Naranjal to conduct a study of flora and fauna at one of the possible sites of The Exploration Institute
    • A team of Persons with Disabilities travelled to Milagro to provide training on inclusion of Persons with Disabilities.  Meetings were held with architects and public works staff on how to best build accessible ramps in the parks and at the University.
    • Conducted disability training at the University of Milagro , Naval and Military Hospitals. [KB1]
    • A memorandum of agreement was signed between University of Illinois, School of Nursing and the University of Milagro
    • A second memorandum between University of Illinois’ School of Medicine and the University of Guayaquil’s School of Medicine was signed
    • During the week of July 18, 2009, ten professionals and ten youths participated in the Annual Health and Education Mission to Milagro.  One hundred and fifty children with disabilities received health screenings, and were provided dental care for the first time in their lives
    • Conducted meetings and training on inclusion, independent living, and accessibility with parents, staff of AVINNFA (stands for what?), (a school for children with disabilities) and the University of Milagro, as well as community leaders. Also helped to create a “Parent Support” group, and an “Educators Support” group.  We provided them with a strategic guide to help facilitate meetings.
    • Met with newly elected public officials in Naranjal and residents of the surrounding community at one of possible sites of the future Exploration Institute
    • Achieved legal status in the creation of Causas para el Cambio – Panama
    • Presentation at the Chicago Metro AEYC (Association for the Education of Young Children) Conference
    • Participated at the 2009 Global Activism Expo presented by Chicago Public Radio
    • Participated as a panelist on disability at the annual conference of the Chicago Global Donors Network
  • 2008

    • In April, a team of four traveled to Ecuador to make a formal presentation on The Exploration Institute to the Municipality of Naranjal.  The project was accepted and Mayor Ruperto Espinoza, formally promised the donation of the needed land.
    • Participated in the Regional Disability Conference sponsored by Rehabilitation Internationalheld inMexico City in May.
    • Established a relationship with The Rotary Club of Guayaquil
    • Accepted a summer student intern from Central Michigan University
  • 2008 Travel Mission

    • A team of 31 adult volunteers and eight youth from the United States, Australia, and Jamaica traveled to Ecuador.  They serviced four villages in the course of five days, as well as a girl’s orphanage, the Perpetual Help Orphanage (Instituto Perpetuo Socorro) in Guayaquil. In addition, a Chicago firefighter was sent to the Galapagos Islands to provide training and present creative solutions to the island’s issues of concern.
  • Through the efforts of our team and Ecuadorian communities we were able to:
    • Provide medical and dental examinations to over 2200 children as well as special services for children with disabilities
    • Prescribed vitamins, medication, and antibiotics to many in need
    • Conducted dental hygiene lessons and provided a toothbrush and tooth paste to each child, as well as a toy
    • Two hundred thirty-nine children and adults were seen by an Optometrist, 60 received eyeglasses.  Twenty-five have been able to receive much needed cataract surgery since our visit
    • Developed and conducted two conferences:
    • The Conference for Professionals included medical and teaching students at the University of Milagro.  The conference focused on disability, inclusion and universal design with presentations by a brain injury specialist, disability advocates and an architect specializing in accessibility.  Zully JF Alvarado, the founder and president of Causes for Change International, gave a speech about the importance of proper disability etiquette and the myths surrounding disability, and successfully led the participants in an experiential disability sensitivity awareness activity.
    • The Youth Conference – “Create, Motivate and Inspire: Emerging Leaders of the 21st Century and Beyond” took place in Naranjal.  The local mayor was present to introduce our organization, Zully and our team of eight U.S. youth volunteers. The youth of Causes served as musical entertainers, speakers and leaders to 250 students ages 14-19.  Zully spoke about problems and fears  the youth are facing in today’s modern world.  They participated in activities designed to help them evaluate and overcome issues in their own lives in order to become responsible leaders in the community.  The exercises focused on building social skills, self-confidence and leadership.  Youth attending the conference received gift bags filled with notebooks, pencils, calculators and other school supply donations.
    • Special Education Teacher, Korin Matter, spent an extra week at the Perpetual Help Orphanage (Instituto Perpetuo Socorro), in Guayaquil to determine their needs and possible solutions
    • Chicago Firefighters traveled to the Galapagos Islands to provide training in fire prevention and safety.  They delivered 13 boxes containing fire gear and tools.
    • Meetings held with the Office of the Governor in Guayaquil to resolve issues of shipment into the country
    • Meetings held with senior staff of the Vice-President of Ecuador on disability.  Causes has been invited to assist the Office of the Vice-President in making Ecuador accessible for persons with disabilities
  • 2007

    • The dental program started in the rural schools “Simplemente Gracias”, in the town of Kilometer 26 in Boliche, in the month of September provided care to 1200 children in five village schools.  With the support of Dr. Maria L. Gracias, Mr. R. Johnson, Mr. O’Keefe and Mr. C. Wolf, the dental clinic was established and continues to provide services with a volunteer dentist.  The clinic will grow to become self-sustaining.
    • Meeting held with two visiting firefighters from Region 2 that includes the Province of Manabi and Galapagos Islands.  Work is underway to create a team that would travel to the Galapagos Islands in February, 2008 to provide training and other support requested.
    • Fundraiser held in April, 2007 at Dominican University, raised $2,500.00 used to help cover the cost to ship a container.
    • In July we shipped two containers, the first was loaded with bicycles funded by Working Bikes and the second contained medical equipment, supplies, wheelchairs, and more.  Donations from World Transport, Kohl’s House and individuals like you.
    • October 2007 celebrated 10th Anniversary at Alessandro’s Banquets, we raised $2,000.00
    • October held first committee meeting for the development of the Hospital Luz de Las Americas as we continue to plan for the creation of The Exploration Institute for children and youth with disabilities.
    • With a contribution in the amount of $300.00 from Rotary Club of College Park, we were able to repair a water tank at Perpetual Help Orphanage, which was desperately needed
    • With a total contribution of $1,000.00 from Rotary Club of College Park Foundation and Ms. K. Sheevers of Chicago, a program for bread making and pastries will be implemented at the Perpetual Help Orphanage (Instituto Perpetuo Socorro)
    • in Guayaquil.  This will support the current need for bread for the children and the older girls will learn skills that they can use once they leave the orphanage.
    • Executed first meeting between Mayors of the Town of Cicero and Canton Naranjal (Alcalde Ruperto Expinoza Rivas and Gladys de Espinoza). Introduced Mayor of Naranjal, Ecuador and President Larry Dominick of the Town of Cicero to the concept of creating a “People to People” initiative between the two towns.
    • Introduction of a new initiative with our partner Causas Para el Cambio called “Water for People”.  It will bring fresh clean drinking water to those in areas where it is hard to come by.  We are hoping to expand the project along the coast.
    • Met with Piurina Correa, sister of Rafael Correa, President of Ecuador, introduced her to Causes
    • Published our first photography book to be used for marketing and fundraising, a video was produced and can now part of it be seen on YouTube
  • 2007 Travel Mission

    • A team of 14 travelled to Naranjal, Puerto Lopez, Porto Viejo, Isla Isabela in the Galapagos Islands
    • One thousand, one hundred and fifty-six children and adults received medical and dental services including children and parents of children with moderate to severe disabilities
    • Three children received custom-made hearing aids
    • “Cold-case” Chicago detective provided training to Galapagos Island Security Personnel
    • US volunteers ranged from ages of 9 to 75.  They included dentists, a chiropractor, and educators
    • Held meeting with the Technical University of Manabi
    • Documentation to officially recognize Causes for Change – Panama was submitted to the Panamanian Government
  • 2006

    • Shipped a 40 foot container with wheel chairs, crutches, medical supplies:
    • A team of 19 traveled to Ecuador during the week of August 2nd.  Children were given a gift of a toy, toothpaste and a toothbrush; some received a piece of clothing as well.  The majority of the children were prescribed and given intestinal parasitic medicine; some were given vitamins, antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medicine and dermatological creams.   Of the 1,656 persons that received services 994 were children from the age of six months to 12 years of age.
      • 591 children were seen by one of our volunteer physicians
      • 313 children received dental care, of which 80% had extractions
      • 508 children were seen by the dental hygienist and received fluoride treatments
      • 159 children and adults were seen by an Optometrist, where appropriate glasses were given or prescribed glasses when not available
      • 85 children and adults were seen by a Chiropractor
      • Delivered and planned for installation of a Dental Clinic in the village of Kilometer 26 thanks to Dr. Maria Gracias and friends
    • In addition 60 volunteer firefighters from 18 counties and villages were provided training in: search and rescue, lifts drags, carries, and wild land fire fighting. We visited with Fire Fighting personnel from the coastal and mountainous areas, the Guayaquil Airport and visited several firehouses.
  • 2005

    • A team of nine volunteers, a dentist, three teachers, and other professionals, traveled to Ecuador.  They joined forces with volunteers of Causas Para el Cambio and provided medical and dental services to 800 children, as well as educational training to 17 elementary school teachers serving 11 schools.
  • 2004

    • Helped a child burned on over 85% of his body to obtain medical treatment and the donations needed for skin graft surgery
    • Requested assistance from customs for items to enter country
    • During first quarter of 2004, Causas para el Cambio was established in Ecuador with its own Volunteer Board.  Currently, Causes for Change is working with the group by giving them working direction and guidance.
  • 2003

    • Zully made the trip to Ecuador.  There she met with volunteers,  made clothing donations and visited a new hospital in Milagro.  She also traveled to El Triunfo and visited a program for children with Down’s syndrome and  made arrangements for a baby with a cleft lip and cleft palate to have surgery at the new hospital in Milagro.
    • At the suggestion of local volunteers, Zully decided to have Causes for Change incorporated in Ecuador as a not-for profit organization.  Steps to do so were taken.
  • 2002

    • Three physicians traveled to the town of Kilometer 26 and the girls’ orphanage in Guayaquil.  They reported seeing over 500 children.  Medications were provided.  Clothing was donated to local children.
  • 2001

    • Two volunteers traveled from Ecuador at separate times.  They participated in an intense leadership training course.  They each stayed for six weeks visiting schools, organizations and participating in one on one mentorship sessions
  • 2000

    • Two trips were made this year.  Two volunteers made the first trip.  Their primary goal was to start a children’s bookroom and a playroom at the girl’s orphanage, the Perpetual Help Orphanage (Instituto Perpetuo Socorro) in Guayaquil
    • Twenty volunteers made second trip.  The focus was on nutrition, dental care and cardiology.  Arrangements for three children with severe heart problems, were made with local hospitals
  • 1999

    • This particular year was focused on dental care.  Our efforts concentrated in providing services to school children in the surrounding villages of Kilometer 26, Milagro, Boliche, Taura and the Perpetual Help Orphanage (Instituto Perpetuo Socorro) in Guayaquil. Over 1200 children were taught to brush their teeth.  Toothpaste and toothbrushes were provided.  Arrangements were made with local representatives from the Colgate Company to monitor the program and to regularly provide toothbrushes and toothpaste.  Dental hygiene was incorporated into the school curriculum in the village schools.  Teachers posted a large sign on the school wall reminding the children to brush their teeth and wash their hands.
  • 1998

    • Coordinated the efforts of an environmental engineer from Chicago and her husband.  The pair was transferred to Guayaquil, to work with a group of women volunteers in Kilomenter 26 to clean the village, and arrange for containers to be placed throughout the village for garbage collection.  An entire year was spent on this project.
    • A curriculum of health and hygiene was instituted in the 11 local village schools.
    • Sought the help of local businesses to participate in donating the garbage cans, brooms, shovels, gloves, etc.
    • Coordinated a mission of 10 volunteers including: a doctor, nurses, a photographer, an audiologist, and a banker.
    • Worked with the same group of volunteers from the previous years.  We had made contact with the Starkey Foundation to donate custom hearing aids.  During our seven-day trip, we evaluated over 2000 children and adults from all parts of Ecuador and arranged for approximately 500 children to be fitted with custom hearing aids with the help and support of a team from El Salvador
  • 1997

    • Zully JF Alvarado, Debbie Hamilton and Amy Lowe (singer and guitarist) travelled to Boliche, Kilometer 26, Guayaquil and Manta.  They played music and taught songs to children in village schools and at the Perpetual Help Orphanage (Instituto Perpetuo Socorro)
    • Clothing donations were made at all locations visited
    • Traveled to Guayaquil and Manta where they worked with individuals with disabilities
    • Held the first “disabilities march” in Manta
    • Arrangements made for a student from Vassar University (Lauren Creamer) to spend three months at the girls orphanage in Guayaquil, Ecuador.  Lauren worked with over 125 girls covering topics such as personal hygiene, their self-confidence and self-esteem
    • Lauren spent weekends with a local family learning the culture and language
  • 1996

    Zully JF Alvarado and Marilyn Varn traveled to Ecuador on a fact finding mission to the cities of Quito, Ambato, Guayaquil and the surrounding villages in the country of Ecuador.  They accomplished the following:

    • Visited coastal area schools to determine needs
    • Toured two schools in Guayaquil for children with special needs
    • Conducted a staff seminar at a center for rehabilitation
    • Visited an orphanage with 125 girls in Guayaquil
    • Donated clothing to the orphanage and a village school in Km 32 outside of Guayaquil provided by The Second Child
    • Conducted three training sessions on domestic violence to thirty women using a video produced by Zully

Conducted mentorship sessions with five women from Kilometer 26 on volunteerism. We determined their interest in creating a group of volunteers to work for the betterment of their village and surrounding villages