The Na’atik Language and Culture Institute’s English language library and librarian is impacting communities directly. Gema Flores Gándara, whose son Angel Poot Flores is a scholarship student in Na’atik’s English program, spoke with us about the impact that Na’atik has had on her son, and her hopes for the future with the library and his education. Read what she had to share below!
Could you tell us about your family?
I’m a stay-at-home mother and am 33 years old. I have a high school education. My husband is 36 years old. He and I both have a high school education. My son, Angel, is 12 years old and is studying in primary school and also at Na’atik.
We came to Quintana Roo 11 years ago. I’m actually from the state of Chihuahua, and my son was born there, but my husband is from Felipe Carrillo Puerto. We decided to stay in Quintana Roo because of its tranquility, people, food, and culture.
What does education mean to you and why do you think it’s important?
Education is very necessary because it’s the only way for a person to get ahead. In addition, to being the way to advance in life, it is also good to enrich the spirit, reinforce knowledge, and learn about culture and values.
How has Na’atik Language and Cultural Institute impacted Angel’s life?
Without a doubt, Na’atik has been able to give Angel the opportunity to enrich his knowledge, learn about cultures, language, and different traditions, and gain a diverse set of skills.
The people working there have enriched my son with their lessons. It has been impactful for him to see the way the work and the teamwork they share. It has been a major part of my son’s education.
What opportunities do you hope Angel will have because of his involvement with Na’atik and the accessibility of an English language library?
- He will have more opportunities in the future including a good job.
- Through the library, he will practice the language and will begin a habit of reading.
- He will learn more about the world and the diversity he lives in, enriching his knowledge of his own culture and those in different parts of the world.
- He has the opportunity to learn even more and reinforce what he’s learned with the help of the library material.
How do you think the library will benefit Angel?
It will reinforce what he’s learned and it will be a way to motivate him to continue learning. This includes creating a habit of reading more often, which will improve his reading skills.
How do you feel about Angel learning English?
I feel that he has the opportunity to have a strong future. English will help him get a good job and also a better quality of life.
If you could give Angel one piece of advice about education and his future, what would you share with him?
I would tell him to take advantage of all of the opportunities that come his way to the fullest, and to enjoy the experiences he has and all the people he meets. I’d also encourage him to never forget his values.
What ways do you hope Angel will use the library?
I hope that he uses the library in the most responsible way and takes advantage of the opportunity to have books to read because usually we can’t afford to buy him books. Here at Na’atik, they are bringing the opportunity of having access to excellent tools and books into the education of the whole community.
What are your hopes for Angel’s future?
I hope that he can experience personal growth, have a professional career, and, in turn, a better quality of life.
What does it mean to you and your family that Angel has received this scholarship? How do you think it will impact his life in the long run?
My son is the recipient of a scholarship with Na’atik. It is a great help economically and there are times when this assistance motivates him to continue studying.
In the long run, this assistance is reflected in his education, he learns more and I believe he will value what he has learned.