When Walberto was young, instead of spending his days playing, his mom kept him and his sister locked up at home while she drank all day. They were malnourished and mistreated. Walberto and his sister didn’t dream of what might be. Life was survival. They lost hope of better times.
In Nicaragua, one of the poorest countries in Latin America, a third of all children are malnourished. Opportunities for stable employment are scarce.
But rescue came when Walberto’s father heard of their situation and brought them to live with him and his family in Leon City. Around the same time, Walberto was registered at a local Compassion centre.
“I had no dreams before I came to the centre,” Walberto said. “I began to dream when I received the classes and began to develop my abilities. I felt happy.”
Walberto started applying himself to school and planning for his future. The Compassion centre offered vocational training, and Walberto found his niche. “I learned to make many things. Then the centre offered advanced vocational training in pastry and I benefitted again. I loved it! Now once a week I make cheese sticks or cake. Tutors and my siblings help me sell them. With the earnings, I buy my personal things and also give some to my dad to help the family.”
Walberto’s father is proud. “I feel proud when he gives me money to help with the family expenses; not many teenagers do that. A while ago he made a cake for my birthday. It didn’t taste good, but now he has improved a lot!”
Walberto’s life is very different now. He loves school and dreams of getting a degree in computer science and running his own bakery. Four years after he joined Compassion, there was another new beginning. He gave his life to Christ.
“That day I felt released,” he said. “Christ took all the heaviness I had.”
“He has grown much since he decided to accept Christ,” said Centre Director Eva Gabriela Narváez. “God transformed his life to the point that he said, ‘I had no idea that God loved me so much even when I had no future, no life expectations and no dreams.’”
Thank you for helping youth like Walberto find opportunities and hope in Christ for their future!
By Orfa Cerrato, Compassion Nicaragua