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I Learn Library

A human library inspired by the stories in the film

Gaby’s Story

By Gabriela V.  |   From : El Salvador  |   School : School of Business & Tourism (LA)

My Story starts here. in Ilopango, El Salvador.

I was born in May of the early 2000’s, at the Maternity Hospital in downtown San Salvador. My family is my mother, three brothers and myself. My first school was Blanca Elena De Hernandez where I attended kindergarten through third grade.

I had to change schools. At Centro Escolar Llano Verde, I studied from fourth grade to ninth. In 2015, I finished school after the ninth grade. The next stage in my education was the institute. I filled in an application to enter and they accepted me. I started my first year of baccalaureate to study as a commercial technician and accounting at the Fabio Castillo Institute.

On May 19, 2017 I had to leave the institute to come to Los Angeles in the United States. I came to the USA because my grandmother organized a green card for my family. My grandmother was living in the US. I came for the opportunity for a better future and a better life.

This map shows the journey of my trip I left my house at 4 am for the airport of San Salvador and left at 8:40 am for the United States, specifically Los Angeles. My mom and brothers came with me on the plane to travel here. I wanted to spend time with my family here and get to know them. I made new friends when I arrived.

I faced many challenges when I arrived. Firstly, I thought that it would go wrong here because I did not know English. I thought I would be bullied for not knowing the language. Secondly, from the moment I got onto the plane, I wanted to return home but had to stay strong.

Starting School in Los Angeles

The new school that I attended in America was great. The name of my school is Miguel Contreras Learning Complex. I like everything about it, like the classrooms, the computers, the help that the Spanish-speaking teachers give us and they help me to improve my English. I like the playgrounds, the pool, the gym and the attending teachers gave me a lot of help on my first day of classes. I felt nervous and I was afraid to meet other people. After a while when I was in school for a few hours I felt better.

Once I had friends, it was easier and I did not feel alone. I realized I was not the only one who was nervous. Day by day things got better and I ended up getting used to this place. Today I have friends who help me practice my English.

Learning English has been difficult but now I understand better and I feel it is easier. Writing English is not difficult, speaking English is the most difficult for me. I am an English learner, people think that I am not good at the other subjects. In reality, I am good at them but I do not know how to explain it in english. I do not get along with regular English-speaking people.

They call us the “Spanish kids”. This is strange to me because they are from a Spanish culture just like us. I only spend time and stay with my friends or with people like me, “Spanish kids”.

My Dream!

In the future, I plan to graduate from high school and then go to college or university. My academic goal is to graduate from university and be a professional detective. I will have a good job one day. I plan to help my dad because I am here partly for him. In my life, he gave me hope.

Someday I will have a house of my own, a good job, a good husband by my side. My future is possible now. I have everything. Absolutely everything. Most importantly I’m never lacking in thanking God. I have food every day I am proud of all the good learning I am doing in my school. I have achieved much to this day. I  enjoy the time with my friends and spend my days with them at my side. This is a great legacy for me.

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