Ruth, Pequeña, NPH Bolivia
Reported by Jamila Noeprick
Communication Officer, NPH Bolivia
It was a sunny day when a shy 13-year-old girl with long black hair, brown doe eyes and small smile on her lips arrived with her two siblings on her hand at NPH Bolivia. She is the oldest of three children; her little sister is nine years old and her little brother two. The death of her mother, no father around, and no other family members who could take care of them is what brought them into our home in 2010.
Now, exactly five years later, it is a hot sunny day when I talk to Ruth, now 18 years old, about her life and her future.
“I want to finish high school and study medicine.” Ruth answered. Her chances are high in becoming a doctor in the future. She is focused on her grades, has no problems following the lectures, and is the best student in her class. Many of our children do not have access to education before coming to NPH. Ruth wasn’t able to go to school when she was young because her mother couldn’t afford it, and because the family was depending on her help, since her mother was ill. When Ruth arrived at NPH Bolivia she needed to start from scratch. That is the reason she is now studying with peers from another age group. “I’m 18 and my classmates are 12 to 13 years old. That’s a difference of five years. This is a difference I can feel every day. I didn’t feel like I was part of the group, so I requested to switch to a program that educated older youths.” This is a program for young adults who want to learn secondary school material in a shorter time period.
Ruth spoke about her needs with our social worker, the psychologist and our National Director José Luis Guzman. Ruth will have to wait until the next academic semester start to attend this school. Meanwhile, she wants to use the time until then to study to be as well prepared as possible.