“I’m grateful to know God and have a relationship with Him.” - Kimberly Valdez
Kimberly grew up in Chicago, Illinois, but has been living in Santa Ana for thirty years. Kimberly was raised by her grand-mother. Kimberly wanted to be a dancer, singer, actress, writer and painter; she wanted to do it all. Kimberly had too many painful moments to share, but has learned that she is important and how to move on. She no longer gets stuck in the past. Kimberly is so grateful to be alive! Her happiest moment was on August 29 when she watched her daughter walk down the aisle to get married. Kimberly is grateful for good people and to know God and to be in a relationship with Him. Her advice to young people is “do what you know is right.”
Important influence: God, family, friends
Grateful for: my talented & joyful students, life
I saw such deep joy and love woven into Kimberly’s story. I loved her smile as she talked. When she expressed what she wanted to do: writer, painter, etc., and her relationship with God, I realized I had a lot in common with her and I used those words in my back-ground. When I started my painting in January I was surprised to see Valentines already on display in the stores. Although I enjoy these bright pink, yellow and vibrant blue candy colors (which reminded me of Kimberly’s sweet personality), I thought Valentines is not true love. What my students are doing – giving unselfishly of their time and talent; bringing joy and hope to help ‘the least of these’; that indeed is true love. In my twenty years of teaching this has been one of the most amazing projects! Brian Peterson and his passion to use his talents and abilities to share with others is truly inspirational and life-changing.