Jose Celis-Hecht Ortega
Jose arrived in Canada knowing just a few words of English. Like other newcomers, his move to Canada was marked by an emotional ambivalence. There was the joyous anticipation of being reunited with his father, and a heavy heart saddened by the thought of family and friends left behind in Nicaragua. Shortly after beginning grade 10, Jose joined the Mentorship Program at his new high school. He met other students, improved his English, and became a very dedicated member of the program. After his first semester, he became a Peer Mentor eager to help youth who were experiencing what he had been through as a newcomer. His commitment and leadership skills furnished him with excellent qualifications that made him a member of CBFY’s Youth Advisory Council a year later. Now, Jose is set to graduate this June with the hope of attending Mount Royal University in the fall. He will apply to the Criminal Justice Program at MRU, another step closer to attaining his dream of becoming a Police Officer.
“I am really glad I joined the Mentorship Program because I gained a lot of skills, such as English, teamwork, leadership, communication skills, and last but not least, confidence that makes me wake up every day and go anywhere with no problem. Also thanks to this program, I was allowed into the Calgary Police Cadets which is one of the biggest steps for the career I want after high school.”