Tag: graduation day

Jun 3 2009

A graduation reflection

By Sheila Myers, communications writer

Sitting on the bleachers of the football stadium among hundreds of anxious family members, I watched as one-by-one, 500 high school graduates in blue caps and billowing gowns paraded down the field. It wasnít the cool breeze giving me goose bumps on that jubilant May evening, but the thrill of watching my oldest daughter receive her diploma.

Sheila Myers and her daughter and husbandAs a parent, the occasion of my daughterís graduation is one of indescribable pride and joy. The event is a major milestone in her life, the beginning of another chapter, and marks the culmination of years of hard work.

From the day Bernadette was born, there was never any doubt that she would attend high school. This expectationóthat our children will graduate from high schoolóis commonly shared by all the parents of my daughterís friends. Itís probably shared by most American parents: 73 percent of American students graduate from high school.

So I wonder how the parents of CFCA students feel when their children graduate from high school. I know that even with sponsorship support, parents make painful choices so their children can stay in school. It can cost a typical household a monthís income for bus fare alone, not to mention supplies and books.

I read about Daniel, a CFCA sponsored student in El Salvador who graduated last December. Daniel was raised by his father, a single parent who struggled to keep finding work so that Daniel and his two siblings could stay in school. At one point, Daniel had to leave school to help his father earn money, but then his father made him return. Daniel walked four miles to high school every day, even in the rainy season.

Like me and my husband, Danielís father understands that education is important for our childrenís future. We are both willing to make sacrifices so they can achieve their dreams, although I recognize the sacrifices Danielís father has made are far greater than ours. His effort is no less than heroic.

I hope when Danielís father watched Daniel receive his diploma, that he took time to savor the moment, to forget about lifeís daily pressures and to feel proud that he played a part in Danielís success.

Read what Daniel’s father thinks about his son graduating

Jun 1 2009

Focused on his children

Daniel, 18, was first featured in the opening edition of The Scholar. Since that edition, Daniel was sponsored, graduated high school and started his journalism studies at a university. Here, his father reflects on raising his children and seeing Daniel graduate.

As told by Daniel’s father to Henry Flores, director of CFCA’s communication center in El Salvador.

Daniel ErnestoMy name is Daniel Ernesto, I am 46 years old and I was born in Santa Ana, El Salvador.

I have two brothers, however, we did not grow up together.

When I was little, my father decided to take me to his sisterís house to live with her because neither of my parents could take care of me. My father died when I was 2 years old, so I did not get to meet him.

My aunt did not have any children, so she gave me everything I needed. Now that I am an adult, I realize that family is more important than having everything you need. The family and the mother offer a natural trust.

My aunt was a teacher. She died when I was 19 years old. However, I was blessed to finish high school and had some extra education in electricity.

When my aunt died, and I got married, I started to work in anything that would give me some income. I did carpentry, bricklaying, etc. When you want to accomplish things, you need to put forth all your efforts. Good things are hard to get.

One of the most difficult moments in my life was when my wife left me and our three children. I stayed with the three of them. From one day to the next, I had to wash their clothes and cook for them. I remember I used to get up very early in the morning to do all this.

It was very difficult for me to adapt to my new situation as a single father, but I trusted God so much. He has never left me alone.

Raising my children was hard, but I had solid moral values. I told myself, “I have gone through this, I grew up without a father or a family, I donít want my children to live what I lived.” My mother even told me to let her raise the children, but I told her that I was going to be their mother and father.
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