This piece was part of the Ánimo Voices Competition, which invited students to write about innovators, upstanders, visionaries, or rebels that have made a difference in their local or broader communities. The competition was an opportunity to motivate, recognize, and celebrate our strong student voices through writing and art.


by Libni Rojas, 8th grader, Ánimo Ellen Ochoa Charter Middle School


My mother is a short, old, and Mexican woman. Even though her appearances are that, she can be brave, hardworking, and is caring to other people. I look up to my mom because she has helped me through a lot. She has made three important impacts in my life which is never to give up, get good grades, and rethink my choices.

One impact that she has made one me is how she is very hardworking. She never gives up on hard times. She tells me to reach for my goals. I would tell my mom my dreams and what I want to be in the future. She would tell me in order to accomplish my goals you need to work hard and never let anything or anyone stop you from reaching your dreams. One example is that when I was small, my parents didn’t know English so it was difficult for them to help me with my homework which made me get bad grades, but my mom didn’t give up on me. She decided to learn some English so that way she would help me learn and in the end I started learning English as well. It was difficult because my native language was Spanish, but like my mom-- I didn’t give up easily. Once I got use to speaking and writing in English, I could do my homework by myself. Then my grades got better. I thank my mother for believing in me which encourages me to never give up.

Another impact that my mom has made on me is how she tells me or influences me to get good grades and to have a career. She also tells me to make a change in the world, by helping others. She tells me to study hard and get good grades so that I can go to the university and get a career. She tells me that there is many bad things in this world, but knows that there is still good in it and we need to spread all the good things to others.

The last impact my mom has made on me and my family is think about the choices you make because they can lead you to positive or negative consequences. My mom, as a adult, remembers how she has made mistakes that lead to bad consequences. She tells me not to make the wrong decisions but to make a right choice so that I can be happy with the results. When I make poor choices, she tells me bad things happen because you chose the wrong choices and now, here, you are facing the consequences. She says think before your actions.

My mom is very important to me. She has made many impacts in my life. She has impacted me by getting good grades, helping others, and telling me to make good choices in life. She has also impacted other people who are her age to keep working hard and help others. My mom has a big impact on my life.