Medardo Cardona began his life, like many Honduran children, in a single room wooden house with a dirt floor, two beds and no running water. Throughout his childhood he shared this space with eight family members. Medardo’s mother supported her children with a ‘chiclera’, a tiny sweet stall similar to others located on every Tegucigalpa street corner. From an early age, Medardo had a love of art, and took joy in carving his own toys out of wood scraps he found in the street.
Although Medardo attended public school and was a good student, by the time he was 15 he no longer had the means to continue his schooling. Medardo and his mother learned of El Hogar’s Technical Institute and were grateful and delighted when he was accepted there.
Medardo worked diligently and was an excellent student at the Institute, where he grew in knowledge and confidence that he could have more chances in life. He graduated as a qualified electrician in 1999. Harkening back to his early love of art, Medardo went on to study for 3 years at the National School of Fine Arts in Tegucigalpa. He sold his work to support his studies, participated in national art exhibitions and won first place in a televised art competition.
Medardo kept his ties with El Hogar alive, and recently discovered that El Hogar was looking to hire an art teacher. Returning to the place that had given him so much at a critical point in his life, he was thrilled to be accepted as a new member of the teaching staff at El Hogar. Because of the poverty he experienced throughout his childhood, Medardo shares a deep understanding and appreciation of where the boys come from and he is a wonderful, breathing example of what they can become if they also work hard and take advantage of the opportunity they are being given.