At 91, Rosario from Guatemala has outlived two husbands and three children. Rosario lives in a shelter for the elderly called “My Sweet Refuge” and appreciates visits from Manuel, her CFCA social worker.
“I no longer have anyone in my family and I like his company. He makes me feel safe and loved,” she said.
What is your secret to long life?
I would say the biggest secret to long life is to give your life to God, because he is the owner of our lives and he decides when it starts and when it ends. …
I have always liked dancing, and I believe that this is another of my secrets to good health.
What advice would you give to today’s youth?
Take care of your life. Do not mistreat your body with vices like alcohol and drugs. Be happy with your life and youth. …
I want to also tell young people to study, because I never learned to read. My father could not give me the opportunity to attend school.
If you could visit any place in the world, where and why would you go there?
I would probably go anywhere in the world. The place does not matter much, but the important thing is to visit people. I like meeting people and would be happy by visiting a place where I can meet many people. For me the interesting thing about any place is its people.
What things have changed since you were younger?
Today everything is artificial, mainly the food. Everything comes ready to heat and eat. Meals were healthier before and had better taste; a tomato was richer and tastier.
When I was little we all lived in a†ranchito (very small home) with a tin roof, and it was normal to have many animals running in the yard. All of us went out to bathe in the river.
Now all that has changed; houses are made with blocks and cement, people have improved their lifestyle through education and don’t work in the fields anymore but in offices, and now they all have a shower at home and nobody is going to the river to bathe.
I have met many people. I have seen many births and deaths, but I am still here. God has given me the opportunity to share my life with many people, and when I die we will meet again.
What has remained the same?
What remains the same are many good people in the world, for example all the people who helped me with their good heart. I’ve been able to survive with charity from many people and with God’s blessing.