By Gaby Andrade, Executive Director
Enerly Alvarez, 13, has been attending the Help & Hope Center in Villa Bahareque, a tiny and impoverished village in the hills outside Rubio, Venezuela, since she was in 1st grade. Now in junior high, Enerly is a very good student who dreams about becoming a doctor. Enerly believes that if she works hard she will be able to accomplish it.
Enerly looks up to Carmen Alicia Rozo, a young woman from Enerly’s village who grew up in the Help & Hope Center herself and went on to become a teacher.
In addition to living in a poor household, Enerly has other challenges. The school she attends is far from her house, and the journey is arduous. Sometimes her classmates make fun of her for studying so hard and tell her no to do it, saying she will never become a physician, and that she just needs to get married and let her husband take care of her, as is customary in her community.
But Enerly doesn’t let anyone take away her dreams. She believes that if she works hard she will reach her goals because Andean Aid will always support her.
Enerly is one of the children Andean Aid provides with lunch on Saturdays. It is the only day she eats protein; the rest of the week she eats only the food her family can find and afford.