My father always said, “The best soldier is the one who gets up and keeps fighting.” I have had to fight for a better life.

When I was young, my father was very, very old and my mom was sick. I had to stop going to school after kindergarten, because my family could not afford it. I had no way to get an education.

When I was 13, a sponsor made it possible for me to go to school again. At the Mission of Hope school, I was provided with an education and food every day. Because I had missed so much school, I started 2nd grade when I was 13.

“When I come back to school, I start in this class.”

The students made fun of me because I was so old. I was encouraged to learn that Toussaint Louverture, the leader of the Haitian Revolution, was educated in his late 40’s. So you are never too old.

I wanted to give up, but the teachers encouraged me, “Don’t give up.” At the age of 27, I finally made it.

It was a good day for me. I am the first person in my family to ever graduate. It was good for me.

Now, I am an Education Champion at Mission of Hope. Part of my job is to visit the partner schools. I help sponsors and students communicate with each other. I know from personal experience how special this is for students. I also bring gifts and take photos of the kids to send to their sponsors.

As I look at the kids we are helping, I am reminded of the impact that Mission of Hope has had in my life. I pray that even more children can get an education and live out their dreams, just like me.

So many people have helped me over the years. My parents help me. My sponsor, my teachers, and God. God is all I have. I have all I need. I have learned that God has a purpose for my life and to never give up.