USAID and ¡Supérate! launch project “Digital Talent”

The solidarity footprints

13 April, 2021

Written by Karen Vargas ¡Supérate! alumni. Translated by Carlos Sánchez, ¡Supérate! Hilasal English teacher.

I have always believed that there is no right time when you feel completely prepared to place a bid for a project or an idea of a project and earn funds from the Solidarity Award from Fundacion Sagrera Palomo. It does not happen that way. There is always doubt, uncertainty and it’s nerve-wracking which is totally normal. Looking back at our experience, I can say that not waiting with our arms crossed for that ‘perfect’ moment to come was one of the best choices we have ever made in that time. I am glad that on October 2018 we knew that by sending that email with our bid was a big step for our project even if we were filled with dread and doubt.

Sueños y Letras started with enthusiasm. The work and passionate ideas of four young women who believed in reading and writing was already causing a major revolution in each of them. Kari, Gaby, Johana and I proposed to bet on education, and self & community development in teenagers and young adults from public schools through the healing power of writing. And thus, creating a project whose purpose is to promote reading and writing among students so they can become citizens who are more conscious of the issues surrounding them and, in the end, who are capable of coming up with solutions based on their own criteria.

Along the way, different people have joined our project such as volunteers who have made a significant impact in our community. We have also joined forces with institutions, writers, storytellers, teachers and other friends. We have built our project with the help of organizations and other sectors who share the same passion and objective as us. Our project is thriving strong and just like in any other project, we’ve had our share of the ups and downs, good and not so good choices, and taken big and small steps.

In 2021, we will be celebrating three years since we launched our dream project. Even though this past year was not our year because of the many challenges the pandemic brought upon us, we have faced it fearless and strong. Everything changed overnight. We had to find different means to complete activities, adapt to online activities, and get used to the fact that the schools were closed due to the pandemic.

The process of adaptation to this new normal is definitely not over and it will continue. I am sure there will be new challenges up ahead, new students with different learning abilities, and of course, new plans for the project. This job is all about that: keep moving forward. The social work and volunteering will never cease and that always leaves room for improvements. That is why our projects are needed and necessary and with the support from programs like ¡Supérate! they are more meaningful.

This award became an opportunity for us to grow and do things that we had never imagined doing before. We have not stopped dreaming and we will continue working for those dreams. Today, we are grateful and we consider everything has been a gain.