Our 2013 Annual Report is now available for viewing on our “About” page. Please wander through it and see how the year went for the foundation and our girls. It was an exciting year, and we have continued to grow, thanks to all our donors and girls! We have also revamped all the girls’ pages, so that each page is divided into an “about” section, and each year as a separate sub page. Some of the pages were getting pretty filled with events, photos and information; this way you can go to an individual year and read about that year and all that happened, without having to wade through everything else as well.
Also, if you have tried to get on the site in the past week or so, you may have seen nothing but a white screen. Sorry for this; it’s fixed now. We just had to update some things and clear out some old stuff. If that happens again, please be patient and try back periodically; our IT guy, Mark Smith from Max Cadman Mobile Marketing (www.maxcadman.com), is amazing about getting back to us right away and helping us non-IT people fix things. Thanks, Mark! We definitely want to give him a plug, in case you ever need any IT support.
What we REALLY wanted to post about was Karina’s Quinceaneras—her 15th birthday celebration on December 20, 2013. Although Karina turned 15 in October, they waited to have the party until December so that the rainy season would be over. As luck would have it, I was also able to attend!
The quinceaneras (also known as quince anos celebration, quinceanera, fiesta de quince anos, etc.) is a huge event in a young girl’s life, and is celebrated all over Latin America. It traditionally marks the transition for a girl into young womanhood, and in times past served as a sort of “coming out party” to introduce her into society. Historically, it was often the first time a girl was allowed to dance, wear makeup, etc. and she was expected to dress the part! While every country celebrates the event a little differently, the general theme and idea is the same. In Catholic societies, the event usually begins with a thanksgiving mass, and there is the procession, the obligatory first waltz with the father, the cutting of the cake, and dancing afterwards. In the “olden days” this was a waltz, but in more modern times, it usually involves contemporary music and dancing.
Please check out Karina’s page (the 2013 tab) for more photos and videos, but here are a few, just for a taste. It was an incredible event, and I feel so fortunate to have been able to attend. Karina was beautiful, and the day was perfect.
Karina and her retinue, waiting for the procession to start (click to enlarge)
She looked like a princess (click to enlarge)
The ranchon at the top of the mountain in Karina’s community (click to enlarge)
The priest gives Karina a blessing (click to enlarge)
Karina with her cakes and presents (click to enlarge)