Postcard from Uruguay: The Beginning of the Journey

SERES local ambassador tell us about his experiences in an international program for Latin American youth leaders

Wilson Sánchez was a representative of the El Salvador ambassador network on the executive board of Asociación SERES in 2016. He’s currently living in Uruguay and participating in an international program for youth leaders organized by Gente Que Avanza.

When I began to participate in my community as an adolescent, my main motive was to be able to support the community that is the inheritance of our parents that they given to us, the present generation. I always think that the insurance of the community for future generations is the duty of the present generation, along with the past generation, as historically it has come about that we now enjoy the community constructed by all of them.

My name is Wilson Sánchez, a young person from the community of El Papaturro, a municipality of Suchitoto, Cuscatlán, El Salvador. From the time I was 14 and began to participate in different community activities, I undertook that road to be able to support the changes that others had gone about creating. From that moment I became more interested in growing and aiming for that through different processes that contribute to what I would be able to achieve with this objective.

Active Listening

In 2010 I discovered Asociación SERES, which has from then on contributed a lot to my personal development as it has to that of other youth who have been part of different processes with the organization. From the first  moment that I participated, I began to hear about active  listening, an indispensable quality in a leader: active internal listening but also active external listening. It’s important to be able to develop this active external listening to be able to give a solution to everything which can be called difficulties or social problems that day by day I can see, and more than just see, can change through action.   

Always looking for these formative opportunities, at the beginning of this year I learned about an opportunity, a program of development for 8 months in Uruguay, which seemed interesting to me.  I found out about the program through my colleagues in SERES whom I’m very grateful to for having always supported me in this journey. Later on I began to look for more information about the program, and I got in touch with the people of the Latin American movement, Gente Que Avanza, which is the organization which offers the program. I started to get to know the different criteria to be able to be accepted into the program, and figure out the economic costs the program has. I maintained communication with them and in April I received the news that I had been accepted to participate in the program, which was news that made me feel very happy.

From that moment on it has been and continues to be one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. The experience is carrying me towards having a different vision, to focus more on the being as a person, as an individual, to reaffirm that before being able to achieve social changes you have to achieve profound personal changes. I’m referring to active internal listening that I mentioned before, which is very important in the construction of a new and revitalized society from the roots, from the bases, from the person as an end and not a mean. I’ve had the opportunity to understand more about the experiences of my peers here, who also come from countries with similar social situations. We have different life stories, but we all seek experiences like the one we are living right now to be able to impact in a positive way the society we’re a part of, as much in its problems as its solutions. I’ve had the opportunity to share with a Uruguayan family, who are people who in the same way are teaching me a lot. The ability to share and put my will to the service of others motivates me and continues to give me strength to keep growing into what I want to be.

-Wilson Sánchez, SERES ambassador, El Salvador 

*To be continued…Read more about Wilson’s experience in his next blog!

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