Gabriela Maria Guzman Fajardo, selected at age 26, is the founder and Director of Proyecto Jóven de Puerto Cortes, a youth center that works to prevent HIV and AIDS. Gaby has experience supervising four employees and over 25 volunteers working to prevent HIV among at-risk youth in the region’s rural and urban areas. Gaby’s dream is to turn Proyecto Jóven into a larger center that provides sexuality education, a virtual library and sports and education entertainment programs for youth. She also hopes to expand the humanitarian aid work that she does in Honduras’ remote Mosquitia region.
Wilson Paz Colindres, selected at age 27, has experience working as the sole teacher in a primary school in the mountainvillage ofLa Jolla. He has a technical degree in elementary education. He also has worked as the Director of the Center for Basic Education. He has volunteered as an environmental educator with the Conservation Corps of Omoa, an ecological organization that works to protect the Mesoamerican Reef, conserve mangroves and sustain the region’s marine biodiversity. He has also been involved with his local health committee and has served as a Red Cross volunteer.
Omar Guerrero Maximo , selected at age 26, is a Garifuna leader from Puerto Cortes. He has experience as director of a Garifuna adolescent theatre group that develops and presents shows on HIV prevention for youth and adults in the various Garifuna communities throughout the area, was an actor in a Garifuna sexual and reproductive health radio program and is also a music composer, writing songs in Garifuna and Spanish on HIV and violence prevention.
Milena Joselin Cacho Martinez, selected at age 22, is a leader of the Garifuna town ofMasca. She has worked as an HIV/AIDS prevention counselor for the U.S. Christian organization, Samaritan’s Purse. In this position, Milena has provided youth with information on sexuality and gender, sexual abuse, self-esteem and the prevention of HIV/AIDS through abstinence. She has been involved in Garifuna theater and radio programs for many years.