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Contents: A story that shapes us, impact updates from each of our partners, and resources for deeper engagement.

The Story

The Power of Opportunity and Hope.

We all know the frustration and anxiety of being locked out of your home. We will try anything to get in. A back door, a window, anything it takes. Remember the joy and relief of stepping inside after being locked out. 

Now consider the frustration and anxiety of being locked out of opportunity. 

Ydekel Capellan grew up in Barrio Maria Auxiliadora, one of the Dominican Republic’s least-resourced neighborhoods at the time. When he was of elementary age, Ydekel independently decided to start selling cookies on the street. The profits from his hustle supported some needs for himself and his mother. He was searching for an open door and found a cracked window.

By the time he was 10, Ydekel had been given a scholarship and welcomed into the T.E.A.R.S. School, an initiative started by local leader Rod Davis. Ydekel became one of the first high school graduates from T.E.A.R.S. and continued on to earn his Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing and Communications. 

Today, Ydekel runs his own athletic apparel business, referees international soccer matches, and works for T.E.A.R.S. and Help One Now as the manager of the Family Business Program.

Through the Family Business Program, Ydekel has helped empower over 30 families in Barrio Maria Auxiliadora to start, grow, and sustain their own micro businesses. These families are his neighbors and are part of creating new opportunities for their community together; increasing their monthly income and creating sustainability for the future.

For Ydekel Capellan, admission into the T.E.A.R.S. school was like finding a hidden key under a doormat. And now, through the Family Business Program and T.E.A.R.S. School, he’s unlocking even more opportunities for others. 

What do you do when you’re locked out? 
Who unlocked the door for you? 
What doors might you unlock for others today?

The Deeper Dive

Insight and story from the International Panel on Social Progress and our Dominican Republic Empowerment Manager, Ydekel Capellan:

Read how education can lead to and promote greater social progress…

Read the Article

Hear from Ydekel on how education gave him opportunity and hope…

Watch the Video

The Data

Monthly Global Team Report:

Read our monthly Global Team Report, with impact data, stories, and updates directly from our partners around the world!

Read Now

Want to learn more about how to move Upstream together? Contact our team for any questions or to talk through how you can join this story and change the world!

“There comes a point where we need to stop just pulling people out of the river. We need to go upstream and find out why they’re falling in.”

 Desmond Tutu