Sofia & Elina
ALUMNA, TEEN SUCCESS, INC.
SAN JOSE PROGRAM
SAN JOSE PROGRAM
Sofia: If you ask me as a mother, I would do anything to protect my child.
When you meet Sofia, you know you’re in the presence of a strong young woman. She’s quietly confident, but when she talks about her daughter, Elina, or is fighting an injustice, her humble personality gives way to a fiercely determined voice ready to face any challenge ahead.
Sofia found out she was pregnant at just 15 years old and for a long time, she didn't have a support network. She'd been ahead with her school credits, but after giving birth to her daughter she dropped out. Two years later, she re-enrolled at Foothill High School, the only school that offered childcare on campus. That’s where other young moms invited her to join Teen Success, Inc.
Sofia: This program made me feel like I wasn't the only one dealing with the situation of being a young mom. It made me feel more hopeful for the future, for my future.
Late last year, 2017, Sofia found out her daughter’s daycare at school was in jeopardy due to budget cuts at East Side Union High School District (ESUHSD).
Sofia: I was fearful about losing childcare for my daughter because that was my only source for help to be able to go to school.
Sofia joined together with the other young moms in the San Jose program and lobbied the school board to keep the daycare program for all parenting students. Together, they created a video giving insight into the challenges all parenting students face.
Sofia: When the Board told us they would keep daycare for another year, I knew in that moment our voices really did make an impact. At school, teachers and fellow students acknowledged that I had spoken out and let me know that they were proud of me. It felt good to be recognized as someone who is willing to stand up for things they believe in.
Sofia wants to use her voice to help others. She dreams of a meaningful career in criminal justice as an undercover agent taking down human traffickers and sites that exploit children.
With her community of supporting moms and Teen Success Advocate, Sofia has been able to recognize her self-worth as an individual and as a mother.
Sofia: My purpose is to be an amazing mother and to use my intelligence to go to college and make a difference in this challenging world.