Cristina’s Story

Cristina Flores on her farm

María Cristina Flores Altamirano

“My name is María Cristina Flores, I am 37 years old, and a single mother of three children, living in the Troilo Monte Oscuro community. I am a stay at home mother who dedicates most of her time to taking care of my children and my home.

In 2015 a series of events impacted my life profoundly. It began when my husband abandoned us leaving me responsible for our three children. This left me puzzled, not knowing what to do or which way to go. I was very lonely, and had lost the motivation to continue living.

That same year, ViviendasLeón conducted a census and held a meeting presenting projects that they wanted to work on in the Troilo community. I went with the intention of distracting myself, but without thinking I found the source of my motivation that I needed in my life, not just for me but for my children as well.

At the beginning I attended the Human Capacity Training (HCT) course, and during those three months I began to discover who I was as a person, my talents, my capabilities, and more importantly my value. Upon receiving my family garden, I not only made a commitment to ViviendasLeón, but also to my children and myself. 

I started by planting bell peppers and green beans, but I did not have a successful harvest. I did not let it discourage me but rather it motivated me to keep planting vegetables for my family, and to try and produce a surplus to sell in the community and in the market in León. Today I not only plant squash and eggplant, but through the student groups that ViviendasLeón brings from the United States, they have helped me build a chicken coop that has served to protect my chickens.

My successful completion of the Human Capacity Training has motivated me to take an active role in the decisions made in my community, because now I recognize what I can contribute to its development. I have only appreciation in my heart for ViviendasLeón, because of their consistent presence in the community, giving us technical assistance, and encouraging us to move forward despite the problems that arise. ViviendasLeón is more than an organization, it is part of my family.”

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