“Miss! I scared you, didn’t I?” Andrea* had snuck up behind me and managed to surprise me. She was so proud of herself—her face was lit up animatedly. That’s one of the qualities that makes Andrea so special—how openly expressive she is with emotions. She is also a wonderful big sister to Ana* and Josefina* (who was recently featured as Amiguita of the Week here). Andrea has a quiet intelligence and quick-wittedness about her, all of which add to her unique personality.
Andrea is quite bright in school. She has learned her times tables faster than anyone in her class, and often helps her friends with their homework. Her work is unbelievably neat and precise. Although she is quiet in class, rest assured that when she does raise her hand to participate, she has the correct answer. Andrea is also very quick when it comes to human observation, and her reactions to certain situations are spot on and quite funny. Once when coming back from Mass, many of the younger girls were crowded in the very back of the van. They were “singing” in extremely loud voices, in a very confined space. Andrea, her face registering supreme irritation, called out in frustration, “Guirras, por favor! Me duele la cabeza!” which means, “Girls, please! My head is killing me!”
Andrea is a loyal friend and sister. She can often be found walking around the 'hogar' hand in hand with her friend and classmate, Savana*. They share a camaraderie that is really delightful to see. Andrea and her sister Ana are different personality-wise—Ana is vivacious and gregarious and Andrea is more reflective and her expressiveness is subtler. However, they look out for and respect each other. In addition, Ana is very protective of her four-year-old sister, Josefina; watchful and observant, she takes responsibility for Josefina’s safety and encourages her to make good decisions about her behavior. They enjoy each other’s company as well—I’ve often witnessed Andrea’s teasing and Josefina’s giggly laughter.
Here at Amigos we are blessed with one hundred and twenty-nine expressive, creative, intelligent, and loving children and young people. Andrea is one of these, and we are so pleased and lucky to have her as part of our family.
~ Genevieve Volpe, 2015-16 volunteer
*name changed to protect privacy