Poverty is a problem that knows no borders and it doesn’t target a particular group of people. It’s a societal problem that plagues people around the world and that traps them – many for generations – in a continuous cycle that can seem nearly impossible to break out of. This cycle becomes worse in developing countries that have no network of support programs for the poor and where unemployment is rampant, which is particularly true in Honduras. It’s this cycle of poverty that is one of the main focuses of El Hogar’s efforts.
By working each year with the children at our four campuses, we’re providing them with the education and knowledge they need to break out of this cycle of poverty. Our students come from backgrounds that have included homelessness, hunger, abuse, illiteracy, and many other factors that would otherwise work to trap them in this cycle that their families have suffered in. Education is a driving force behind them breaking free.
When a child gains an education, they have a necessary foothold to climb out of poverty. They finally have paths to choose from in life, which can include attending university or finding a good job. They’re no longer hindered by their past, but are empowered for the future.
I’m quickly approaching the completion of my first year of working at El Hogar and throughout this past year, I’ve been struck by the stories of success that have been shared with me about our past students. Though it’s very difficult in a developing country like Honduras to keep in close contact with all of our graduates, we’re excited about the stories that are shared by them when they check-in with us. These stories are evidence of how life-changing El Hogar’s work is for our students.
I’m reminded of graduates like Mario Mejia Sanchez, who came to El Hogar in 1998 from a home with a hardworking single mother and five siblings. His mother worked long days that began at 5 a.m. and ended at 8 p.m. when she would arrive back at the family’s rented room to begin her housework. At El Hogar, Mario was able to get an education and to prepare himself for a bright future. According to him, “Graduation left us with a great sense of accomplishment and a certainty about our preparedness for life in Honduras.”
Mario now holds an administrative role in the Honduran military. His success has enabled him to financially support his mother and to purchase a home for her to live in. It’s success stories like Mario’s that show the difference that El Hogar is making in the lives of the most vulnerable children in Honduras.
I’m excited to share stories about our graduates – something I look forward to doing much more in the future. Their stories of success and of breaking out of the cycle of poverty make me proud to be a part of the El Hogar family.
I encourage you to also become a part of our family by providing support to our students and giving them a future full of hope and optimism. It’s not difficult and only takes a few moments of your time, plus maybe one less takeout meal per month.
When you do, let me be the first person to welcome you to the El Hogar family and to thank you for working with us to break the cycle of poverty.