15 years ago an extraordinary girl arrived at Puerta Abierta to give a new dynamic to the house, Angie.
At just 6 years old, Angie would walk around the house all the time observing everything and then stopping to ask every adult she met, what do you do, why, what for, what is it, how does it work, how does it work? Most of the time she got answers; and she regularly responded with more questions. Anyone would have thought this was annoying or awkward, but it should be noted that Angie was not just asking, she was also helping. This is a very characteristic trait of Angie, she is always willing to help and is very well done.
After school, she used to come directly to the administrative staff, to observe what they were doing, she was very impressed that they were working on the computer, using the calculator, the copying machine, answering the phone. Angie would repeatedly come up to them and ask, "What are you doing, how long does it take, and then what's next, who are you going to give it to?
One day, our project coordinator mentioned that she was taking the project to a company, and obviously she asked what is a company? And the answer captivated her, since then, when asked what she wanted to be when she grew up, she said "I'm going to work in a company, in a very big one".
And that's how, observing times and movements over the years, Angie's questions and skills grew. At school, her strenght was always mathematics, music and soccer. When something broke down in the house, Angie appeared with a solution, her specialty is to help solve problems of all kinds. She has become a great support.
Just like her, at Puerta Abierta we observed her times and movements, we seeked to offer her opportunities to foster her potential with a focus on STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) empowerment.
The time came to choose a career and indeed, for Angie it had to be something related to business, mathematics and problem solving. She is currently studying Engineer in Industrial Organization and is in her element, confident in her strengths such as mathematical thinking and driven by her curiosity and natural interest in continuous improvement.
The house keeps changing thanks to Angie, our first STEM girl, now with all she has learned about processes, materials and logistics, she not only observes, now she analyzes with a scientific mind; and the best part, she has already made proposals and we are implementing changes to save water and many other resources optimizing our time and movements.
Thank you Angie, thank you donor for making this possible!
We are more than happy to see how she increases her potential, grows as a person and empowers herself as a woman.
I´ve been very good this year, I ve done my chores and I´ve had good grades in school.(*This is how every letter, of every single child should start, our girls included).
Our report this December will be in the form of a letter to Santa on how each one of them is doing:
Gaby graduated from university with a Bachelors degree in Psychology. Since then, she’s been workingon her indepence program and will leave Puerta Abierta very soon!
Karla starts her last semester in January, she continues to make us proud with her Marketing degree grades and is also responsible for a start up bakery.
The triplets have amazing grades. María and Lupita are studying Law and Angeles is doing industrial engineer. We are so proud of them, but most importantly so are they.
Moni just started her studies in Marketing and Advertising and is having very good grades. She had a hard time at the time deciciding between Marketing and Advertising or Business but is now certain a good choice.
Brisa, is one of the girls who makes us and herself the proudest of. She arrived in Puerta Abierta when she was 16 years old coming for a very violent situation and has taken every opportunity given. She is doing a degree in communications and nothing will stop her.
Brisas´s sister Fatima is in her last high school year with amazing grades and taking advantage of all opportunities given as her sister, she will decide what to do in University.
Zule arrived when she was 15 years old with her niece Lluvia. She has taken care of Lluvia since she was born and now that she knows Lluvia is well taken care off , she has allowed herself to bloom, she is happy and doing good in school. Although Zule has had a hard time with several subjects she is focused ad perseveres todo good.
Alma is a very sweet girl who is strugling with issues of her family at the moment. She will finish high school next summer and wants to do a degrre in physiotherapy. We continue to keep an eye on her and accompany her during these times.
Paula Ximena is another of our newly teenage girls who is going through a rough time questinoing why she is not loved by her Mother. Something that is very hard to go through and particularly at this age. She is sorrounded by all of us and specialized people who have offered her tools to cope with it all and become stronger. We are confient she will do it. Her grades could be better but she knows it and will get to it soon.
Our second little girl also named Ximena (we have 2 girls named Ximena) is also strugling in her new school, however she is a good girl and will overcome it.
The rest of our girls, the little ones all are good girls and I can tell you they behave good and are doing fine in school, Kimberly who had never gone to school at her 10 years is eager to learn. Her teacher tells us that she will catch up as she has a great attitude. She asked Santa for some roller skates.
Paulina and Lluvia are a blessing, they bring so much joy to the family and we could not be more grateful. They dream of barbie dolls and Christmas, we hope Santa will give them a good surprise this year!
We wish you very happy holidays!
Love from all of the girls!
OUR GIRLS ARE LEARNING TO RESOLVE AMBIVALENCE
The sense of belonging is formed through a series of memories that leave a trace within us to form our identity.
When our experiences or memories are very painful or ambivalent, the tendency is to try to repress them or change them, thereby making the acceptance of these events and memories especially difficult.
The young women in PA continue to live with this ambivalence, sometimes wanting to go back to their families (forgetting the threats and dangers that made them leave in the first place), while at the same time realizing that PA offers them a life with peace and security (knowing that their integrity is not constantly endangered and where they can envision a promising future full of opportunities).
These ambivalence is even stronger for these young women because despite the fact that in PA they benefit from the love and acceptance of the adults, as well as enjoying the camaderie among their peers who have had similar experiences, they still are confronted with that dilemma of wanting to go back to their roots.
PA´s function, in part, has been to help the residents understand and accept the dilemma they are experiencing, by giving them the necessary skills and strategies to priorize their interests and be clear about their feelings.With these skills and strategies they will be able to make decisions with which they can be in peace.
In PA we work with these young individualsto help them discover the potential they possess in order to facilitate a healthy development. In this way we hope that they will be able to heal the wounds throughout their different stages of development.
As adults and caretakers in PA we have to accept the decisions our residents make, even if they do not agree with our point of view. This attitude of acceptance and unconditional positive regardis a fundamental aspect of the working philosophy of Puerta Abierta. One never stops to learn and grow.
We are gratefull to have you as our donor,
Puerta Abierta believes every new family member is always a gift, a challenge and a great opportunity to think about what we can expect and what we can do.
Kimberley has just arrived! At 10 years of age, she has never attended school, and as such her knowledge and mental potential do not correspond to a girl her age. Nonetheless despite these conditions, she is now going to school, where her condition is accepted, handled and where we are working to make the best of it.
She has been accepted in a Montessori school, where the teachers will work on adapting and integrating her. She has a very positive disposition to learn and takes advantage of this opportunity. She is also learning other new skills as swimming, art, special learning skills and going into emotional therapy, all under the Puerta Abierta umbrella.
Fortunately, she is integrating well in the family and the other girls, older and younger, have welcomed her.
Kimberley recognizes and accepts her new family structure, rules, security and safety. Seeing other girls who have gone through a similar adaptation process, gives her peace of mind, and reinforces her will to take advantage of the new opportunities and experiences before her.
It is never too late to learn, and our girls as well as our adult tutors know this well. Every personal experience is different, and it is only with an open heart and mind that we can make our daily living easier and happier.
We should always be open to new challenges present every day, and together we will be able to solve them, no matter how difficult it could be. As always we keep looking on for better ways to handle these challenges and maintain our family’s spirit.
We will keep infomring you about her progress,
My name is Paulina, I am 9 years old so far my life’s been a rollercoaster. I was taken away from my parents due to the violence I lived in. I could barely sleep at the time, it was scary… but this email is about my new found family, Puerta Abierta.
Ever since I arrived I was able to sleep and rest. I am happy, I love to draw all day and play with my dolls, I like helping in the kitchen and baking cakes. I am enrolled in a bilingual school, it was difficult at first but now I can understand so much and with extra English lessons at home I hopefully will soon catch up with my classmates.
Together with Lluvia (she shares a similar background to mine) , we have created an imaginary world full of fun and adventures. We are the 2 youngest ones, the older girls are generally not interested in playing dolls and roleplay with us. We play and play, though sometimes we fight but we are best friends. She goes to my school, she´s in the year below me, like me she had never studied English and also takes extra English lessons. Sometimes I can help her out with what I know already.
When I grow I want to be a veterinarian because I love animals. I love to take care of them, play with them… oh actually I forgot to tell you we have a dog. Her name is Bella, she plays with us in the garden and sits next to us when we’re doing homework.
Bonus day today is a big Day for Puerta Abierta, your donations will help keep us going to school. I promise I´ll do my best effort. My grades this school year are good and Lluvia´s also even in English we were good students.
Please Donate today as GlobalGiving has matching funds!
Thanks for all you do for me and the rest of the girls, you make our dreams possible. Thanks from the bottom of my heart.
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