(Written by 2009 BECA graduate, Chris Ruiz)
What’s the meaning of family? An easy answer, isn’t it? Family are the people you care about the most, people with your same blood, people you grow up with, hoping one day you will be just like them, people you love with all your soul and heart. Well, that’s the way I feel about SJBS. San Jeronimo Bilingual School has been my family since it was founded, since I was in that first small classroom with 7 other kids waiting for Mr. Frabrizio Pignoli to begin our first day of school. Since that day, I knew big things were waiting for me and my classmates.
Every single teacher made us feel like home, and that’s why I think SJBS is different from others schools in my community in Honduras. We had something special, something unique. At first glance, we might seem like just a bilingual school, but deep inside, we were more than just a school. We were an intercultural family and we’re still a family.
Volunteers have been a big part of my life even now that I am no longer studying at SJBS. Every single new volunteer, even if I didn’t get to be with during my high school year at San Jeronimo, made me feel I was still part of the new generation of students, and that’s the special thing about SJBS.
Every kid who comes to study at SJBS or every volunteer who leaves their country behind so they can come to teach at SJBS becomes part of our family as well. Everyone is part of the SJBS family, even if they are from a different generation.
Sophomore year was one of the best year I had at SJBS. I learned to appreciate a my school a little bit more. Graduation day was a very happy day for me and for the rest of the ninth graders, but it was kind of a sad day too because we knew that it was our last day at our second home. We were leaving the school we had grown up in, but I can tell that our heart and souls will stay forever at SJBS.
That’s how much of a family SJBS is to me. A normal student from a normal school would be so desperate to leave their school as soon as possible, but SJBS is not a normal school. Leaving SJBS was terrifying because you feel like you are leaving a very important part of you. You would never get to find another school like SJBS. So what’s the meaning of family to you?