Entertaining real-life stories with valuable lessons on how to succeed in business and in life
Entertaining and compelling real-life stories with valuable lessons on how to succeed in business and in life. The author is successful business, real estate, and media entrepreneur Dick Kazan.
Published on February 2nd, 2016
Juan Pablo Romero Fuentes: Rescuing children in horrific circumstances.

Juan Pablo Romero Fuentes
Juan Pablo Romero Fuentes  
Photo: cnn.com

Life is so dangerous for many Guatemalan children, that their fearful parents have sent them by the thousands unaccompanied to the U.S. hoping they'd find better lives.

As a Guatemalan teacher, Juan saw his students confronted by gangs and drugs, just as he and others in his generation had been, and was determined to help those children find a better life in Guatemala.

But "Their parents had no jobs, their families were disintegrating," Juan told CNN. "They had no hope or motivation."

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In 2006, 23 year old Juan began an after school program in which he tutored and mentored a few of his students.

Soon, Juan welcomed many more children into his program..

"These families are in desperate situations," said Juan. "They have no money and no hope for a better future for their children."

Then Juan converted part of his family's home into a community center and created Los Patojos, ("The Little Ones") a nonprofit organization.

Today, less than 10 years later, Los Patojos offers free classes, tutoring, low cost medical care and a free meal each day.

For a lot of those children, that meal may be the only meal they have that day.

The program now feeds more than 100 children a day and the medical clinic services over 1,500 people a year.

Juan Pablo Romero Fuentes
Juan Pablo Romero Fuentes  
Photo: cnn.com

"I created a safe place for them to realize that they actually can change bad aspects in their lives and their community," Juan told CNN. "I wanted to give them a better present in order to attain a brighter future."

Los Patojos will be building its own school, one that will educate 250 students from preschool through sixth grade.

"In a violent country, the only weapon we can have is love," Juan said. "These kids are already powerful, but they don't know that yet."

"I love my city and my country," said Juan. "I want to inspire these kids. They are the ones in charge of writing the new history in Guatemala."

Success Tip of the Week: One caring person really can make a difference, including you and me, if from our hearts, we help those in need.

Editor's Note: To see a 1 minute, 51 second video of Juan and Los Patojos, click here and a 5 minute, 22 second video of Juan, click here. Both were produced by CNN Heroes in tribute to Juan and Los Patojos. To read more, see http://www.cnn.com/2014/07/31/world/cnnheroes-romero/ All quotes are from CNN or CNN Heroes.

In the next KazanToday: In his struggle with cancer, a man who made a remarkable discovery.

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Also from Dick:

A Touch of Wisdom Personal Writings Of Love Sane Ramblings

Memorable Quotes

Writings Of Love

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