Lidsay Rosa Leyva Diaz is 21 years old and a participant in OSA’s college support program that provides young folks from low income families the opportunity for a college education. Rosa is the second of four siblings who lives, with her parents, in the fourth zone of Collique. She shares her memories of a happy childhood as part of a loving and supportive family; "I think of my mother as my best friend and my father as my counsellor." 

Rosa is a little shy but cheerful and loves to sing. When she was in elementary school she participated in the OSA educational enrichment program when the missionaries Chris & Jessica Rose were involved and shared Christian values through the medium of music and song. What Rosa most enjoyed was when the mission teams came from Houston and she could enjoy all the fun activities they organized.

When Rosa finished high school she applied to OSA’s college support program and she is now in her fifth semester studying Civil Engineering in the ‘Universidad Privada del Norte’ (a university that is quite close to Collique). Her passion and dream is to use her profession as a means to serve poor families who are trying to build a house, using her expertise to provide the engineering plans free of charge.

"My dream is to become a civil engineer and help folks in need, also to have my own engineering company. As a teenager it was my brother who motivated me to choose this career path as he also loves and is involved in construction."

As well as her passion for engineering, Rosa is involved with her family in serving others in her neighborhood who are in need through a number of different activities. Rosa shares one recent example for us; "At Christmas time, together with my family, we organized an event where we shared panetone cake and hot chocolate with the children from the poorer parts of our neighborhood’."

Rosa’s dad is Martín who has been involved with OSA for many years and is currently serving OSA in the area of maintenance and other tasks. Martín is a very committed worker with a servant heart, as well as very able in the field of construction and the maintenance and repair of all manner of equipment and furnishings. Martin is currently being supported by OSA to learn English, so he can better communicate with construction teams that visit Collique on mission trips. Martín shares his words of thanks for the support his daughter is receiving; "I thank God for the help my daughter receives. Without OSA’s help it would not have been possible for her to go to college as our family income would not have been sufficient. As part of OSA I’ve learnt to be a better father and husband, and I am very grateful for that."

Rosa also shares her thoughts on how OSA has improved the family’s quality of life; "I thank God that through the parenting workshops my dad has been helped to improve his character and I’m also grateful that with the support he is receiving he is able to learn English’."

Rosa doesn’t just receive economic help for her college studies from OSA, there is also spiritual accompaniment and mentoring to help her meet the challenges she faces as a young woman in different areas of her life.

Rosa is a great example of the impact of a family being transformed by the gospel when the children are still young and, as a result, are able to grow into mature young adults with values and convictions that hold them in good stead in the face of the many difficulties they face. With gratitude and joy Rosa shares with us a few final words directed to those who are supporting her in her studies and life; "I thank OSA that through you I am able to study my chosen profession and receive the spiritual and emotional support that allows me to continue forward even in the midst of the pandemic and difficult economic situation the country is facing." 

Watch this video to learn more about Rosa and her family.