Fernando standing in a hairdressing salon
Fernando, 16, trained as a hairdresser in the region of San Pedro Sula. © SDC

Fernando, hairdresser

„There are 10 in my family: five brothers and sisters, three nieces and nephews, my mother and father. My mother and one sister work as domestics, an­other sister works in a factory. My father does not work, and drinks a lot. There are many problems in our home and we often have nothing to eat.

I did not finish primary school. My mother took me out of school to allow my sister to attend for a few years. Since childhood, I have spent a lot of time in the street. This was a negative experience. My friends got into trouble. Some of them were killed as a result of gang rivalry. Many young people in this neigh­bourhood are armed. Even the bravest are afraid.

As soon as I heard about the training programme I enrolled because I wanted to get away from the street. The training available was either to become a motorbike mechanic or a hairdresser. I opted for the hairdressing course. Since entering the INFOP work­shop I have no longer had to go hungry. I looked for someone to lend me his hair clippers, and now peo­ple pay me [for my work]. My mother asks where I get the money. I tell her that I cut hair and she just laughs. I want to find work and show my family that I can earn a living honestly.

Last December I had the honour of working in the best hairdressing salon in my neighbourhood, and they paid me 420 Lempiras (20 Swiss francs). In the future I want to work in a hairdressing salon, to buy myself things, help my mother to finish build­ing the house, and open my own salon. If I make my mind up to do it, I know I will succeed.”

Corresponding project

Projoven – Honduras