Saira Raudales was born on October 11th 1987. She lives with her mother Luz Natalia and her father Marselino in the small village of El Ocotal. She has one sister and three brothers.
Saira’s family relies largely on vegetable production for their sustenance and income. Saira’s father plants cucumbers, eggplant, and green beans, all of which he sells in the capitol city of Tegucigalpa. Growing up, and continuing today, Saira plays and important part in the family effort that goes into producing these fruits and vegetables. When she is not occupied with school work, daily chores, or preparing meals, Saira’s lends a hand in the bean and cucumber harvests.
Saira attended first to sixth grade in the local grade school of her home town of El Ocotal. After completing the sixth grade, she continued her studies at a local high school in nearby Monte Redondo. For students in these very rural areas, the opportunity for a continued education at the university level is extremely limited, if not inexistent. The sacrifice to send a student to high school requires a tremendous effort on the part of the family and the student. Ever since Saira was a young girl, she has had the dream of completing her university education and becoming a teacher. This dream has motivated her to make sacrifice after sacrifice to continue her education.
Saira’s passion and desire to educate herself led the CHE Fund to recognize her as an excellent candidate. In 2008, Saira began her university career at the Autonomous University of Honduras (Universidad Autonoma de Honduras) in Tegucigalpa. She has excelled and demonstrated exceptional dedication not only in regards to her focus of Journalism, but also through her responsibility and professionalism in terms of her CHE Fund commitment. As she enters into her second year of studies, Saira has become an example for new scholars and a beacon of light for the future of the CHE Fund. She will soon take on more of a leadership role within the CHE Fund as the Joseph M. Martens Education Award unfolds, which is a new program that offers scholarships to current high school students.