#Hope2019 Hero Enrique Planelles recounts his experience in Ecuador

“It is hard to put in words this kind of exciting and emotional experience.

It was an incredible opportunity for me to join AGORA in such a beautiful and human project like the Revuelta festival. To be able to contribute to something as fundamental in life as culture and hobbies in parts of the world where they need it most. It’s amazing to me that something as simple as a one week photography workshop could bring such fulfillment to the children. Most of us are so used to having so much that we forget the joy that comes from simple things.

The children explaining their unique point of view through photography

Thinking back on the trip, I feel the children impacted me so much more than I impacted them.

The first day of the workshop I thought things were going to be complicated; by the second day the children were already opening up to us much more. Throughout the week they constantly gave me a sense of peace and happiness, despite the harsh reality they face in the hostile circumstances around them.

In the end they are just kids, and what they need is to play, to be happy and affection. We tried to make our teaching experience as hands-on and playful as possible, but they really were the ones who taught us to not sweat the small stuff.

Above all, I will cherish the memories of how much these children smiled, their happy faces and their families’ hospitality, who opened their lives and homes to us, sharing everything they have.

The children taking their photography outdoors to search for good subjects

Thank you AGORA and the Amor y Vida Foundation for making this experience possible for me. It will stay with me forever.”

Enrique Planelles is a photography hobbyist living in Barcelona, Spain.