7-18-13 | Success Story
Emotion told the story. In our interview with Flor, her tears and smiles spoke of the struggles she endured and the success she achieved. Her words simply filled in the gaps to this uplifting story of how educational opportunity can inspire change.
Flor is a mother of nine, who described the early years of her life as “a bit hard.” “My mother died when I was young,” she said. “One of my brothers died in the war and another in a car accident. I was alone.” To get by and feed her family, Flor worked as a domestic servant for several years. During that time, Flor never lost hope that something more was possible.
Eventually, she applied to the Oasis of Hope School to work as a cleaning lady; the director, recognizing her potential, offered her a job as a teacher. Flor found her calling working with the children of the Oasis of Hope School, a true haven amidst a rough neighborhood where crime, drugs, violence and poverty are commonplace. Flor’s affection for these children was evident: “I think of them as my children. I love them all. I wish so much that these children didn’t live in this place.”
Last year the Oasis of Hope chose Flor, from 32 candidates, to attend a diploma course at Managua’s UNAN University. This USDA sponsored program, implemented by Fabretto, helps teachers like Flor to earn a post-secondary certification. Flor’s diploma, which she was noticeably proud of, “makes a big difference,” she said. “I cried at the chance to go to University. I had not studied in years. I feel changed, intellectually.”
Working with students is now Flor’s primary concern. “I would love to see that a student that passed through my hands is a well formed person in society,” she told us. Flor recognizes that she serves not only as a teacher, but also as a role model for the children in her classroom. “Sometimes I ask my students, what do you want to be?” she said. “I want to know that they aspire to something in their lives.”