Meet José, Jovenes Constructores participant
My name is José, I am 17 years old and I am in my first year of high school with a diploma in hotel management and tourism at a public school in downtown San Salvador. I have been participating in Glasswing programs for one and a half years. In 2020, I enrolled in the Jóvenes Constructores (YouthBuild) program and I am currently in the Finance Club; in addition, I volunteer in the Creando Profesionales (Creating Professionals) program.
I live in a notoriously dangerous community. I was born there and I have grown up seeing things that, at times, were hard to believe. I have seen young people in my community lose their lives because they took part in illegal groups, sold drugs, and other things of that nature. I have also been mistreated by the authorities, because they think that I am no different from the other young people in the community. This went so far that one day I was unjustly imprisoned for something I had not done. The trauma and difficulties that this experience left me with have affected my growth and my ability to socialize. Furthermore, the most difficult family situation I have been through was the death of my father, as I lived with him alone.
Through all these challenges, I have had the support of the programs. I have been given the opportunity to receive a diploma in entrepreneurship, I have been able to better develop my skills, and I have come across more opportunities. Today, I run a bakery I inherited from my father. At first, I wasn’t sure how to run the business, but the Finance Club and the Jóvenes Constructores program have helped me find the support I need to succeed.
At first, I wasn’t sure how to run the business, but the Finance Club and the Jóvenes Constructores program have helped me find the support I need to succeed.
However, the most important thing has been the emotional support I’ve received through these programs. Here, I’ve learned to get along with people, to become more sociable. I’ve also learned about values, skills, things like resilience and community service. Thanks to these programs, I have been able to move forward, and today I am a totally different person, with goals, higher self-esteem, and motivation.