Celebrating our 10 year anniversary has been very emotional for me. I think more about the children I failed to save than the ones who have become successful learners.
I think about the teachers who fought so hard with us the first year we opened. Only 2 out of 7 returned. Our tears of frustration and incompetence.
I look at these photos and remember what it felt like. It was like trying to direct a circus no program and no audience that cared.
The only thing I cared about were those kids. Giving them a voice, giving them a purpose and showing the world they could learn.
We achieved this one child, one parent, one teacher at a time. You can use powerful words like “impact” “advocacy” and “social change” but the most important word in this story is LOVE.
Manos Unidas was my first baby. I loved her more than life itself. I also birthed two other children during that time. Now they are all my children.
As I reflect on 10 years since conception, 14 years in Peru, again, it seems like a blurr. The most profound memories are the ones adrenaline burned in my brain, mostly around stress and others suffering.
The kids are who I still care about most in this world. I will now go to greater lengths, beyond Manos Unidas Peru, to get to those children still unreached. Those who are still locked behind closed doors, the invisible kids in classrooms, any child who deserves a voice and a chance to learn.
Join me on my next journey, bring on the next 10 years!