- Ariana Cvitanic
Celebrating Promotoras and the program
Yesterday was the Promotora Celebration we held for our parent leaders that volunteer their time to teach the parenting classes to other families in the community. Their dedication to their own continued learning and growth through teaching is something that continually inspires me.
The celebration was a time where all Promotoras and their families were invited to come celebrate all their hard work and connect with one another. This was the first in-person event we had since the pandemic began, and it was very powerful. To see the Promotoras that I've gotten to know so well playing, dancing, laughing, and celebrating with their families was a beautiful sight to see. To also see the growth in their kiddos is incredibly rewarding. Isaac, one of the babies who was quite shy when I started on with Resilient Families, is now the chattiest Kathy I have ever met. At only three years old, he was telling me all about his new baby brother Sebastien and how it's his job to teach him as he grows. You could see the love and pride oozing from mother's and father's eyes. As well as from my own, I'll have to admit. To see a little boy growing up in a nurturing environment and finding himself at such a young age gives me renewed hope for the future of our society, where so many little boys never have that chance.
Additionally, the Promotoras had a chance to talk about how much this program has changed their lives. Roxana, a new promotora but extremely dedicated and hardworking, shared about how she thought she couldn't become a promotora at first because she did not have a perfect handle on everything that was taught in the class. Later, she realized that there is no such thing as a perfect mom, but that she is learning and growing, and that is helping her be more loving towards her son Caleb. I definitely teared up when I saw her tearing up. Flor, one of the earliest promotoras, shared how she used to think she was the perfect mom because she made sure her daughters' shoes always matched their dresses, but then through the program, she realized that being a good mom was so much more than just external appearances. She now knows that she has come a long way, and although she may not do everything right, she is proud of herself for being a more empowered mother who believes in herself.
Witnessing the change that the Resilient Families program has made not only in the Promotoras, but in all the lives of the families they've touched, reaffirms my belief in community healing community.