boys sitting eating
Henry (middle)

Early life

Henry is from the village of San Nicolas, municipality of Esquipulas, department of Chiquimula, Guatemala. Whilst a young child, his mother and father ran a small shop from their home. They made a basic living helping to feed the family but it was a dangerous area and they lived in constant fear of the gangs operating in the community.

When Henry was 4 years old his mother and father were shot and killed whilst working at home. Their tragic deaths deeply affected Henry and he and his sister went to live with their uncle and his other 9 children.

It was a difficult and chaotic existence. Living with his uncle the children were often hungry and neglected. Henry was determined not to give up his dream of a better life. In late 2020 he heard about the work of the Sisters and met some of their graduates and contact people then working in his community. In the midst of lock down he was offered a place at the school in Zona 6 and he joined in January 2021.


boys standing outside with book and backpack

Life at school

Safe in the care of Sister Dora in the St Paul family at the Villa de los Niños, boystown in Guatemala, Zona 6, Henry realised he was finally safe. He no longer needed to worry about food and he just has to study to the best of his ability.

Catching up with schooling has been a challenge for Henry but he says that he works hard and “I try to improve every day because I like it, I have worked hard to get a good grades in my subjects and one day be able to finish my studies at both the basic level and high school, because if I don’t study I won’t find a better job opportunity.”

Now that he is 15 he is beginning to realise his goals. He says “my biggest dream is to graduate with a degree in Industrial Welding. As for my values, it has cost me a lot to be able to practice them because when I was in my community I didn’t practice them, but now I make an effort every day to achieve a change in myself. I also want to continue studying at university.

Thank you for all the help and may God bless you always.”