Each country has its struggles and challenges, and Chile is no exception. While the presence of hardships is inevitable, charity in Chile has the mission of improving the lives of the most vulnerable.
Though there are countless to mention, here are five charities currently operating in Chile.
TECHO-Chile is a non-profit organization that focuses on housing and community-based projects in Chilean slums known as “campamentos.” More than 1,290 campamentos currently house more than 113,000 families nationwide, the most significant figure since 1996. The people who live in these slums lack some of the most essential material conditions, such as proper electricity, clean water and sewage.
TECHO-Chile works directly with the local vulnerable communities and volunteers to foster a feeling of responsibility for improving their own lives. This Chilean charity has two broad focuses: social and housing. In 2022 alone, they built 597 emergency housing structures, significantly improving the living conditions of over 8,000 families. TECHO-Chile has been immensely popular since its inception, with over 60,000 volunteers who have given their time and effort to be agents of change for the most vulnerable Chileans.
Hogar de Cristo
Hogar de Cristo is a secular charity in Chile whose mission is to provide assistance and opportunities for the most vulnerable and socially excluded Chileans. The organization has a mission to create a bond between local communities to aid those who suffer from poverty, homelessness and social exclusion. The main focus is on those in extreme poverty of all ages who live on the edge of society.
The Chilean charity focuses on early education, vulnerable children, educational reinsertion, homelessness, senior citizens, labor inclusion, mental disabilities, problematic consumption and solidarity action. In 2022, Hogar de Cristo helped 8,958 people through early education programs, supported more than 33,000 vulnerable children monthly, aided 2,591 people with educational reinsertion, assisted 3,236 homeless people, supported 3,236 senior citizens, aided 6,234 with labor inclusion, helped 1,757 people with mental disabilities, assisted 493 people with problematic consumption and support over 21,306 people though solidarity action programs.
Fundación Mi Parque
Fundación Mi Parque executes projects focusing on the design, restoration, creation and usage of green areas in underprivileged areas of Chile. This charity in Chile aims to improve the quality of life of those in vulnerable areas by creating aesthetically pleasing and practical parks and plazas. Everyone deserves to be proud of where they live and to be able to take advantage of its facilities. The organization partners with private companies to secure financing, engages volunteers in the creation process and subsequently involves public departments in maintaining the green areas after their inauguration.
The belief in the synergy between the public and private sectors as well as members of society has led to successful projects with tangible improvements in the Chileans’ quality of life. There have been 400 projects that have built 687,089 square meters of green areas in 16 different regions, benefitting over 1 million people. These projects have led to a 76% increase in new plaza use, a 17% decrease in trash, a 31% decrease in graffiti, a 9% increase in perception of safety, a 14% increase in community participation and a 12% decrease in fights, shootings and robberies.
Creciendo Juntas is a secular, non-political, non-profit organization that focuses on improving the quality of life for children who live in Chilean National Service for Minors (SENAME) homes. After disheartening experiences visiting SENAME homes, Magdalena Gardilcic created an organization that provides self-help, education and entertainment activities to develop a better path for these children, teenagers and former SENAME young adults.
Volunteers participate in and organize activities such as cooking workshops, theater classes, self-care courses, gardening, mini-libraries and field trips. The Chilean charity works consistently with five SENAME homes in the Metropolitan, Valparaíso, O’higgins and Bio Bio regions and works with over 25 homes during campaign periods.
Fundación Nuestros Hijos
According to the National Childhood Cancer Registry, an average of 1.36 Chilean children are diagnosed with cancer daily. This disheartening reality has led to the creation of Fundación Nuestros Hijos. This non-profit looks to improve not only the probability of survival but also the quality of life of children with cancer. The Chilean charity recognizes the multidimensionality of a cancer patient, thus investing in medical and investigative programs as well as rehabilitation, social programs, educational programs and personal relationships.
Throughout 2022 Fundación Nuestros Hijos has collaborated with 85 partners who improve the livelihoods of countless Chilean children and teenagers with cancer. With hospital, at-home attention and special events, the organization makes a constant effort to aid these individuals. Their education, oncology rehabilitation, shelter, medical service and social service outreach and development programs have supported 938 Children or young people, delivered 94,464 services and benefits, and 3,752 people, including family members, reaped the benefits.
Charity in Chile
These five organizations strive to make a difference in Chile, from housing and community development to childhood support. TECHO-Chile focuses on housing and social projects, while Hogar de Cristo tackles poverty, homelessness and social exclusion. Fundación Mi Parque creates green spaces in underprivileged areas, Creciendo Juntas improves the lives of children in SENAME homes and Fundación Nuestros Hijos supports children with cancer and their families. Each charity’s commitment to their cause is to forge a better life for the people of Chile.
– Agustín Pino