This is a small but significant part of Bogota, my hometown.
Maria Mercedes is a friend that I met in the company that I'm working for currently. She is passionate about origami, she teaches the Japanese art and practices it almost anywhere. She shares her talent with many people around. During the weekends she visits one of the most deprived populations of Bogota. This plot of land called Paraiso is located in the south border of the city, combines need and poverty and at the same time the hope for a better future.

She visits Paraiso twice a month. When she arrives, usually a child called Sebastian is waiting for her, he helps to carry the bags with the breakfast and crafts materials. The first thing we see is a heavily inclined hill. At the top lays the place where around 25 children of the neighborhood are waiting for her. We go up around 100 meters, after that it's hard to breathe. But that doesn't matter to her, she greets the children with enthusiasm.

A little piece of paradise

The first thing she does is to serve the breakfast, many of the children want to help in that chore but only the oldest ones are allowed to help. After that the classes begin, Maria Mercedes has mastered the technique to give instructions and to catch the attention of the young audience. I help with some of the kids that want to draw or to color black and white copies.

After the class finishes, the kids take a moment to play. Some moms that support the morning class give us lunch and start telling us their stories. Everything finishes around noon. For me, it's a pleasure to learn from such as inspiring person as Maria Mercedes. Is always refreshing to see such a committed woman.