Two years ago, Victor stood before 400 people attending the Be A Voice Awards Luncheon and told them his story. “A victim of my environment”, he said, as he recounted his earliest memories of life in Nicaragua panhandling, sneaking weapons into prisons, and other criminal activity no child should be subjected to. Born to a mother who never wanted him, he endured 15 years of horror, including abuse by an uncle, before he was caught by the Department of Homeland Security in Texas. His story didn’t get any better once in the US as he was handed over to a “friend” posing as his Uncle in Miami who kicked him out upon his arrival. He was homeless, didn’t speak English, and roaming the streets of Miami doing whatever he could to stay alive. He stood on the MacArthur Causeway Bridge one day, ready to end his suffering, when a taxi cab driver pulled over and asked him what he was doing. Five minutes of a stranger’s time and a $20 bill for food saved Victor’s life that day.
Victor spent the next 3 years in Foster Care, where he met his Guardian ad Litem and where for the first time in his life he had someone he could trust. Things started looking up for Victor; he had people who were willing to believe in him until he could believe in himself. He learned English, he graduated from high school, and he obtained his permanent legal residency by the age of 18. He enlisted in the Army and served 13 months in Iraq before returning back to Miami and connecting with his mentors from Foster Care, who continued to diligently help Victor by broadening his base of support.
In front of a standing ovation, Victor concluded “Even though I did not directly live in your home, I am one of your children. I am the product of what happens when someone cares.”
And care our donors did, as more enlisted to help Victor along on his path to success; from the emotional support and stability provided by supporters who took him in to the assistance Voices provided for his rent, a car, and tuition at Miami Dade College. On March 3rd, Victor successfully completed the School of Justice’s Basic Law Enforcement Training Program and won the Male Physical Fitness award. He is now ready to take the State Law Enforcement Certification exam and achieve his dream of becoming a Police Officer.
Thank you to all of our supporters who cared enough about Victor to make him who he is today.