When Felipe* first arrived to Amigos de Jesús in 2010, he was a feisty nine-year-old who had received very little prior schooling. These days, it is hard to remember the young boy who walked through our gates just six short years ago. Today, Felipe is a teenager known for his wide smile, love of jokes and pranks, and propensity for learning. He is an excellent student with a big imagination. He is constantly exploring the world around him and can often be found taking things apart to analyze how they work. This past December, Felipe graduated from 6th grade at the Amigos de Jesús School and two weeks ago, he began classes at the local public junior high. He is thriving in his new environment. We can't wait to see where his curious mind takes him!
- Age: 15
- Birthday: June 4th
- Grade/School: 7th grade in 'colegio' (junior high) at the local public school
- What is your favorite class in school? Home Ec. class. We have it for 2 hours every Monday. Right now, we are learning how to cook, and we wear aprons. This week we made fruit salad with apples, watermelon, grapes, bananas, and pineapple. We spent class cutting up the fruit and then we got to eat it in our own cups at the end. Next week, they are going to teach us how to make pizza.
- Who is your favorite teacher? My teacher for Home Ec. who is also my science teacher.
- What is something interesting you learned in school this week? In Home Ec., we learned about how to properly wash ourselves before and after handling food.
- What do you like to do in your free time? Mostly talk to girls :) No, just kidding. I like to talk to my teachers, play soccer with some of my friends, walk around the Amigos property, and watch the other kids play.
- What do you want to be when you grow up? Math teacher. I will have the kids call me "Profe Mango." (Almost all of the kids at Amigos have nicknames that they use among themselves. Felipe's is "Mango" because of the size and shape of his head. We tell him his head has to be so big to hold all of the brains in it!)
- What are you most thankful for at Amigos de Jesús? I am thankful that I am alive and that Amigos gave me the chance to live. I am thankful for my education and for the volunteers. I am also thankful for the padrinos (Honduran caretakers) because they make sure we eat and give us good advice.
- What is your favorite part of Amigos de Jesús? The soccer field because I like playing soccer there.
- What do you like to do with the volunteers and the madrinas/padrinos? With the volunteers, I like to practice Spanish and English, and I like to do my homework with them. With the madrinas and padrinos, I like to go on walks, talk with them, and have convivencias ('get-togethers' that the kids have in their dorms every so often).
- Who is a role model for you at Amigos? Jaime* (one of our boys with special needs) because even though he is different, he wakes up every day with a lot of energy and is always making the most out of life. Also, he knows everything that is going on and everything he is doing. He is smart.
- Favorite songs/singers: Michael Jackson and the song "Tu poeta" by Alex Campos
- Favorite color(s): Red and black
- Favorite food(s): Fruit cocktail, pizza, chocolate-covered banana, hot dogs
- Favorite movie(s): Pan's Labyrinth and The Book of Eli
- Favorite book: Oh the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss
*name changed to protect privacy