Farlis: Out of War
By Lauren Espinet and Abby Helt
“ We have to take our chances. We can’t let fear stop us.”
For fourteen years her family lived in a small adobe house with a tin roof in a dusty compound. Farlis and her siblings had to ride on a banana truck everyday to school. In school, Farlis said that to survive you need to be loyal to your friends and not be a sapo. A sapo means toad but is slang for informer or a tattletale. In villages, sapos can get many people killed. The climate in her town is dusty and hot.
‘If you kill the father you kill part of his child as well.’
‘They did not want to remember the terrible events of war. Yet I was sure that for those who lost family members in massacres, like those of La Chinita and El Bajo del Oso, the pain would never die’
Events that influenced who she is
Events that influenced Farlis was that one of her mother’s friends was killed from violence.
Farlis met this woman Graca Machel who was studying the impact of armed conflict on children in UN. She was pleased with Farlis’s views. Also, Farlis was eventually elected the first child mayor. One more time was when Farlis’s cousin almost joins a gang.
"People in columbia would rather fight over a disagreement than talk about it. If they do talk they are only interested in proving the other person wrong not finding common ground. But how can we learn peaceful if we don’t understand what it means? No one here has ever lived in peace. We have been fighting since the time we were born and so have our parents.”
What she stands for
Farlis stands for her family, because she loves them. Farlis also stands has always hated war and violence. Farlis gave up her best friends because he was cleaning a gun. Instead of thinking of herself and her wants, she focuses on the big picture.