Posted by Amy Chipman
(Photo: Heydi Yajaira Sánchez Bracamonte of Perú and Hans Brandes.)
Hans Brandes was an engineer and project manager at Bath Iron Works Corporation for his entire career. His connection with Perú began in 2011 when his son did service work there. In 2012 he discovered Corazón de Esperanza, the only youth transition home in Northern Perú. It is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing hope to orphaned children, at-risk teens and impoverished women through the support of youth transitional homes, orphanages, schools, youth development, women’s sustainability projects, short term mission trips and volunteer programs. Hans has been a sponsor since 2012 and has travelled to the home (Casa Hogar Luz de Vida) almost every year, staying for 3 months in 2017.

Hans has worked hard to learn the Spanish language, in order to connect with the youth at Luz de Vida. The reward for all those hours spent learning the language is when you can sit down and talk with the youth and learn more about them, especially to listen to their hopes and dreams. 
Joining Hans for the meeting is Heydi Yajaira Sánchez Bracamonte, one of the youth who lives in the youth home in Peru. This is a truly rare occasion that one of the youth is here in the United States. Heydi was an orphan for 10 years before becoming a resident at Luz de Vida. She represents what our mission is: transitioning peruvian youth from poverty to independence. She is currently studying at the local university in elementary education in order to become a school teacher.
Hans and his wife, Mary, live in Maine and they have two children.