Jhunnie Manzano


Anything can be possible as long as you have the power in your heart to share your story.

I was born February 13, 1999, at Alameda Hospital, at 11:55 p.m. in the cold of winter. My family, immigrants from the Philippines, have had some hard times. When I was young, I didn’t have friends and being Filipino, people targeted me in a hurtful way.

I thought of hurting myself but an inner thought is always talking to me, even to this day. It told me to stop. The voice said I had a purpose and inspired me to do more for myself. It told me to always end the day with a smile.

I didn’t want to join MIMS, but now I’m glad. The program helped me share with other students. They encouraged and made me feel safe, saying that what we say stays in the room. I would like to thank everyone because each of them has taught me something important or given me a reminder about life and choices for the future.

I was on a field trip with MIMS at Alameda Hospital. We were learning about how disease can get into your body from insects. My friends reminded me that I have always wanted to be an entomologist. How did I forget?

I want other people to know that there are caring people smiling with encouragement for your story—you are not alone and keep believing in yourself. You can get what you want.