We are in the LAST WEEK of our Viva Fund Summer campaign, raising money for the youth program. Thank you donors for your generous support! If you haven’t had a chance, donate today before the campaign ends on July 15th!
This message was written by Tulio Moya, one of the Youth Program Coordinators at the Mangrove Association in El Salvador. In addition to working full time at the Mangrove Association, Tulio also works as the choreographer of a modern dance group, The River’s Dance.
“Interacting with others is what I like the most and if that interaction is through dancing, that’s even better,” said Luis Javier Pleitez during a dance practice of the dance group The River’s Dance. Luis is a member of The River’s Dance, a group that brings together 27 youth from different communities. This dance group from the Lower Lempa region of El Salvador is part of our Youth Program at the Mangrove Association.
To date, the group has given many different performances and participated in a series of workshops on dance techniques. Another dance group within the Youth Program, called Saint Romero of America, has also participated in these workshops. In the workshops, the dance groups learn about warming up and stretching, breathing techniques, choreography, different genres of music, and many other themes.
But dance isn’t the only activity of our Youth Program. Mangrove Radio is a community radio that is led by the youth. It is an essential tool for sharing our work in the Bay of Jiquilisco Biosphere Reserve. Ada Ortíz, one of the radio announcers, comments “I feel very proud to be on the staff of the radio. It motivates me to keep working harder and helps me realize that we can achieve anything we aspire to in life. Youth have an enormous potential and we have to take advantage of that.” In addition to her work with the radio, Ada works as a Youth Program coordinator, focusing on literacy and reading promotion. “To date, we have implemented eight school libraries and one community library. We have achieved a lot, but we want to continue on in this process and work even closer with the youth.”
For me, what motivates me to work with youth is believing in each and every one of them. It is my goal to create a space for young people where they can fully show the qualities and capacities that they possess. This country is full of youth- believing in them means believing in ourselves.
Thank you to all of the selfless people who give from their hearts so that Salvadoran youth have the chance to develop their leadership skills.