Hija Meritisima de San Salvador
Ambassador Jean Manes
Tuesday, June 18, 2019, 6:00 P.M., Teatro Nacional
Remarks by Ambassador Jean Manes on her “Hija Meritisima de San Salvador” Award
18 de junio de 2019
* This is a courtesy translation. Only the original Spanish version should be considered authoritative.
Thank you very much for this recognition. I officially love being a Daughter of San Salvador, a city that will stay in my heart forever. It is truly a great pleasure to receive this Savior of the World, the symbol of a city that has so much to offer, a city with so much potential.
It is exciting to see how Salvadorans are slowly taking back their city, one block at a time. The renovation of a historic center is a great undertaking, which requires a long-term vision, a concrete action plan that involves all sectors. And above all, it requires a lot of political will to put first what is best for El Salvador, to seek the common goal and leave aside the points where it cannot coincide.
I remember very clearly one day in a meeting in my office talking about the plans for the Cuscatlán Park and from the beginning we agreed on one thing: whatever the end product was, we wanted the Cuscatlán Park to be world class. From the beginning we wanted a park that was worthy of a capital and that the renovation was going to be much more than putting a few layers of paint. We wanted something great because that is what Salvadorans deserve. We agreed on that point from the beginning, and everything else gradually fell into place.
Cuscatlán Park is just one of all the precious things that exist in El Salvador, places with history that need that same commitment and the political will to bring them to life and preserve them for future generations.
I think that their predecessors had a lot of wisdom when naming this region “Cuscatlán: Place of Precious Things”, because El Salvador is full of many precious things. From its beaches and its lakes, its mountains, but also and more importantly, its people and everything they have built with so much effort, so much passion and with so much hope for the future.
For me, the Cuscatlán Park project and the restoration of its historic center – is much more than just a park or a historic center. It is a symbol. A symbol that El Salvador is changing. A symbol of hope. A lighthouse, showing what is possible when we really work together.
I trust in you. I am confident in your abilities to create your own future.
Every day we make decisions and we can decide to be people who build, who create a better future. Now is the time to join forces. Sometimes there are unique moments in history and you have to take advantage of them to make a major change. I believe that now is the time for El Salvador, but it requires the commitment and action of all.
I want to thank the honorable Mayor Ernesto Muyshondt for this recognition and also all the special guests. Each one is leading the change, demonstrating what is possible when we work together.
I leave you with a quote from Ernest Hemingway, from his book “For Whom the Bell Tolls”, which I find very inspiring and which I hope will also inspire you:
“Today is just one day, of all the days, that will ever be. But, what will happen on all the other days that come, may depend on what you do today. ”
The future of El Salvador is in your hands. Make every day count.