Pahokee, Florida: a village in an economically disadvantaged area with a
population of more than 400 residents. Most of them are immigrants and poor living off the land. One out of every four children is unable to finish their
studies. That's why ten years ago the New Hope Charities was born: to give a
chance to struggling families. It all began with a pilgrimage to a shrine of the
Virgin.Lillian Fanjul de Azqueta
President, New Hope Charities
There I found the love of Jesus and Mary so strong in
my heart, and telling me: I have given you so much and what have you done for
me? So I decided that I was going to change my life and give it all to working
for the poor and the needy in the name of Mary and Jesus.
is originally from Cuba but she has been living in Florida for the last 50
years. When she came back from the pilgrimage, she started to pack food for the
migrant workers. But she soon realized it was the children of the migrants who
were the most in need. Lillian Fanjul de Azqueta
President, New Hope
Charities FoundationWe have an after-school program. When we saw that the children had no place to go after school, we
bussed them into a centre where they do their homework and sports. We have a day
care centre because the parents were working and they were leaving their
children locked up in the houses or lying on the field where they picked up the
tomatoes or whatever. We have a clinic to help the sick, and the parents
learning English as a second language and different things that have grown.
What's next for Lillian Fanjul? She is an enterprising woman who will not
settle for what she has accomplished so far. Lillian Fanjul de Azqueta
President, New Hope Charities FoundationMy next project is to
help as many people as I can, to help as many children as I can, to have an
education. I believe that if you have health and education you are doing what
God puts you here to do.
And that's why she has expanded her work to the
Dominican Republic, where she has opened an AIDS prevention center and a
vocational school for teenagers, to give them the skills for the job market.