Breaking the cycle

    Spotlight Audio 6/2020
    Anthony Mondragon
    © Jill Simpson

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    Transcript: Breaking the cycle

    Homeboy Industries is a social enterprise that gives training and jobs to people who have been in gangs or who have been incarceratedinhaftiertincarcerated. One of those people is Anthony Mondragon. At 15, Mondragon was sent to jail. At 16, he was to releaseentlassenreleased and was lucky to get a place at Homeboy. Now 21, he works as a sorterSortierer(in)sorter at Homeboy Electronics Recycling. He also attends night classes at Pasadena City College. Spotlight asked him what he likes most about his job.

    [What I like most] about my job is pretty much the customer service. You learn excellent customer service, and also just to be able to see what’s inside a computer, a monitor. It’s just the items that you see here, it’s pretty cool, and, of course, helping out the environment. That’s why I love my job.

    But there are also things about his job he’s not too keenbegeistertkeen on.

    Dealing with all these wireKabel, Drahtwires, you know, all these mixed wires that we get, and pretty much, like (ifml.)so, also, irgendwielike, when we work with toners and stuff like that. There was one time I was working with a toner, and I guess I was forcing it too much, and it just exploded, you know. So, you got all this inkTinte, Farbeink in your face and it’s just unpleasant.

    Mondragon had a tough childhood, but he has greatly improved his life with the help of Homeboy. What have been his biggest achievements so far?

    My biggest achievement is being able to to maintainerhalten, beibehaltenmaintain my life and maintain this job, and also helping the environment. And being able to say I’ve to accomplisherreichen, schaffenaccomplished the majority of the things at my age that anybody has, and it’s not going to stop there.

    Of course, to achieve those things, Mondragon has had to to overcomeüberwindenovercome some serious challenges.

    There’s a lot of challenges, but one of the biggest challenges is being able to to provide forversorgen, für etw. sorgenprovide for myself, you know, and not going back to jail, stuff like that, and hanging around with the wrong people. It’s been hard because I grew up with this, and it led me to not even hanging around with these people that I [hung] out with growing up because of where the area was and just because, I mean, I have friends that are still on the block, gang banging (ifml.)Banden-Kriminalitätgang banging and stuff like that, and they’re still stuck on drugs.

    So, what does Mondragon hope for the future?

    My biggest hope is to be stable for the rest of my life, you know, have a family. Because I have so many problems, you know, everybody does, you know, and it’s hard to live like that, you know, especially when you’re in debt to society and stuff like that. But one of my goals is just to be stable, you know, and finish with school, have my own house, have a couple of cars and have a family, you know. I never had a family growing up. I never had a childhood, and honestly that’s one thing that helps me strive, you know, because once I have a kid, I’m going to be there for my son, you know, and I’m not like my father and I never will be, you know. That’s what I set for my future, and I want to be able to say, look at all the things that I’ve been through, but look at all the things I have accomplished, you know.

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