Hundreds of clients come through the doors of La Posada Providencia each month. Many of them are fleeing dangerous situations in their home countries, and for security reasons their identities are not shared with the public. Because of this, their faces and names often remain unknown to the rest of the world.
Their stories, however, are touching and inspiring.
We wish to share with you one such story.
One of our long-term clients from Guatemala arrived at La Posada this past fall. Having just turned 18, Ricardo (whose name has been changed for this story) aged out of a Youth Center in Brownsville and was brought to our shelter. He left Guatemala fleeing extreme poverty to come to the United States looking to work in a safe environment and provide for his very poor family back home.
He has three brothers and six sisters. His father can’t see well, which makes him unable to work much. His mother has the task of caring for the whole family.
“The client is very grateful for everything La Posada has done for him,” said Program Director Sister Zita Telkamp, CDP. “He says he has learned a lot since coming here. He has learned how to cook, how to work in the yard, garden, and loves the classes he takes. He has also made huge strides in learning English, and we are all so proud of him.”
But aside from working very hard every day to improve his situation in the U.S., Ricardo already wishes to give back to others.
While he was at the Youth Center in Brownsville, Ricardo learned to make crochet hats. He recently began to make several of these hats–which take an average of two hours to make–so he could donate them to be sold at La Posada’s upcoming Hands & Hearts Brunch.
Ricardo works on the hats during his free time between chores and classes.
“He is one of our hardest working clients, always asking how he can help out,” Sister Zita said. “Whenever he sees that something needs to be done, he takes the initiative to do it.”
He says he thanks God that he is here at La Posada.
“La Posada treats me really well, and everyone here is so nice and makes me feel welcomed,” Ricardo explains.
He is particularly grateful to the Sisters for everything they have done for him and all the other clients.
Ricardo added that although he doesn’t think the hats are much, he still wants to help in whatever way he can.