EXPO Esperanza (Hope Expo) was held August 15-17, 2013 at Casa Vida y Esperanza (CVE) in Magdalena de Kino, Sonora, Mexico. This project of The Fatted Calf is in its fourth year and keeps getting bigger and better each year. This year we had 64 children participate and exhibit over 300 projects in 25 project areas. Thirty-four of these participants were children from CVE and 30 were children from the Magdalena area. The mission of EXPO Esperanza is “To develop leadership, responsibility, and technical skills in today's youth through experiential learning programs that encourage proactive involvement at community and personal levels.”
Improvements and additions for this year included: EXPO Esperanza Committee, new projects (scrapbooking, tortillas, salsa, small species, horse for young children), age categories, renovated stage and new bleachers at CVE, project training classes, community service projects, multi-year wall plaques, food stands, carnival, and awards banquet.
As EXPO Esperanza continues to grow and become a tradition in Magdalena, it has been very rewarding to watch the children grow from year to year in their work ethic, courage, persistence, confidence, communication, and technical skills. EXPO is definitely having a big impact on the children. One mother related this story – “(my son) Diego battles with reading. However, he really wanted to participate in Oral Interpretation and practiced and practiced -- and he won! It was great for him to experience that! And as a mom, I am so proud of him!!!”
We would like to express our sincere appreciation to all of the 33 volunteers that came from the U.S. throughout the year to help with project training and the execution of EXPO. The Fatted Calf would also like to thank the 36 volunteers from CVE and the Magdalena area that contributed to training, planning, judging, and working at EXPO. As one CVE caregiver put it, EXPO is “LOTS of work, but so worth it!” A special thanks goes to the EXPO Esperanza Committee of: Jonathan Aupperle, Joel Leman, Enrique Ochoa, Stephanie Rinkenberger, Katie Schick, Ann Wullf, and Duane Wulf.
To see many more photos from EXPO Esperanza 2013, click on the slide show below or go to www.facebook/EXPO.Esperanza.