42nd Independence Day Reception
Ambassador Jean Elizabeth Manes
Tuesday, June 26, 2018, 6:00 P.M., CIFCO
Remarks by Ambassador Jean Manes at the 242nd Independence Day Celebration
* This is a courtesy translation. Only the original Spanish language text should be considered authoritative.
June 26, 2018
I welcome you all to the celebration of the 242nd Independence Day of the United States. I’m currently recovering from the flu and I am losing my voice – I can assure you that I did not lose my voice yelling at the television during the World Cup matches.
I want to start by thanking our embassy team, especially those who have been working on this event for months (applause). Many thanks also to the American companies that have supported us for this event and of course to all of you, who are our invaluable partners for the goals we seek to achieve together.
It is an honor to celebrate this date in El Salvador. In the 155 years of our diplomatic relations we have shared great victories, but we have also had difficult moments. Currently we are going through one of these moments. There is a very tough debate going on in the United States about immigration. From the embassy we are doing everything possible, in collaboration with the government of El Salvador, to support efforts to reunite the parents who were separated from their children.
However, our relationship has always been characterized by our ability to find common ground and this is what makes us get up every day, the work we do with you, our partners in government, the private sector, NGOs and citizens all over the country.
Entering my third year in El Salvador, I have had the enormous privilege of being the ambassador of this great team and I could not be more proud of them and of the work they do with you, forging safer countries for all our citizens, with opportunities for all of you to develop your own projects.
All our embassy efforts are aligned to the pursuit of this ideal. It is what guides us day by day when we work to increase economic opportunities and a Rule of Law without impunity.
And to achieve this goal we can not be satisfied with what worked for us yesterday. We have to be creative and able to see beyond convention and tradition. For that reason, in the Embassy we designate 2018 as the year of innovation, because innovation is the spirit that fosters development and that drives change in a society.
Innovation abounds around us.
We can see innovation in the League company, with a textile factory model where each employee is realizing his potential and has changed the whole community around him.
Another example is the innovative Yo Cambio program, in which prisoners pay their debt to society working for their benefit.
We also see it in the courage of the women who work in the Office of the Prosecutor using new investigative techniques, building complex and dangerous cases, risking their lives and that of their families for the good of the entire country.
All these people have one thing in common: they believe in El Salvador and are willing to fight for their country, they are our inspiration.
To finish – I heard once that a good leader is not known for the number of followers he has, but for the number of people he can inspire to have confidence in themselves. All of us can use our positions and our voices to inspire others and highlight the good that is happening in every corner of this great little country.
This year will be critical to determine the direction that El Salvador will follow and you have the support from the embassy to achieve this goal of improving conditions for all Salvadorans.
Once again, thanks to all of you for your collaboration, your dedication and commitment to El Salvador.
I hope you enjoy the program and happy Independence Day of the United States of America!