Do you know this picture? It's my sweet home!

Luis Felipe in a banana plant (Photo: Gisella Evel Sarria)
Image caption Luis Felipe in a banana plant (Photo: Gisella Evel Sarria)
In a family home at SOS Children's Village Estelí, Luis Felipe lives peacefully with his five brothers and their SOS mother. At age 13, Luis is a student in fifth grade, likes going to school, is responsible with his homework, and gets good grades.

It is very easy to meet and recognize Felipe since he is a very sociable, playful, affectionate, cheerful child and always has a smile on his face.

In the wake of the 60th anniversary of SOS Children's Villages in 2009, 23 children and youth in four family homes at SOS Children's Village Estelí enthusiastically organized their time to express through their photos what a loving home means to them.

The popular Felipe is one of the participants selected. Initially, he was doubtful of wanting to participate, because photography was never to his liking, but this time was different because for the first time he had the opportunity to get his hands on a camera and express his thoughts through his own photos. Very happy, the first day he went to his SOS mother Carolina and, with his racy face, said to her: 'Do you know this picture? It's my sweet home!' His mother was very excited and shared every moment that her son had caught by giving him a strong hug, saying to him: 'Your home is very beautiful on those photos'.

Luis Felipe studying (Photo: Gisella Evel Sarria)
Luis Felipe studying (Photo: Gisella Evel Sarria)

This was a novel experience for Felipe, and he is very excited to share with many people in the world what a loving home means to him. In a pleasant dialogue with his SOS mother and SOS brothers, he said with a smile on his lips: 'I feel happy and supported by my mom and that has been important to me'. His SOS mother Carolina affectionately replied: 'I'm proud that you're my son and that you like your family'.

At Felipe's home there is a lot of unity, there is healthy and harmonious coexistence where the children feel safe, supported and genuinely respected, where his optimism and hopes are always shared and understood by all his family.

For now, his favourite pictures have been fastened to many of the plants that adorn the gardens of his home and community. He will continue to take many pictures for a few more days. Very happy with his work, he says: 'My favourite photo was taken at the banana plantation, where a quaint banana plant bears fruit directly from inside the stem'.

Now Luis Felipe wants to able to share with his family, friends and many other people his music played on his guitar and his beautiful drawings. He knows that his life is full of many opportunities that allow him to be a very cheerful and happy child.

Article written by Gisella Evel Sarria, social worker from SOS Children's Village León.