Young mexican star supports San Miguel children
By Jade Arroyo, Photos by Antonio de Jesús Aguado
Diego Boneta, a 21-year-old actor and singer, jumped to international fame with his role in the film Rock of Ages, sharing credits with big Hollywood names like Tom Cruise and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Since 2010 the performer has lent support to the San Miguel nonprofit organization Feed the Hungry. Recently, Boneta was in San Miguel, and along with Feed the Hungry volunteers he visited the Francisco I. Madero School, located in the rural community of Palo Colorado, where 130 preschool and elementary school children are fed by this organization.
Boneta became acquainted with the work of Feed the Hungry a couple of years ago, when he came to San Miguel for the first time to visit family friends. One of these friends was part of the organization, and she told him about their work. He could see the problems and hardships that these children face, such as poverty and lack of opportunities. Interested in supporting humanitarian causes since an early age, Boneta said he feels a special affection toward San Miguel de Allende and its people. Every school day, Feed the Hungry supplies 4,000 meals to children throughout the municipality in rural schools, orphanages and shelters.
Spending time with the children
During his visit, Boneta helped serve breakfast to the students, ate with them, played basketball for a while and afterward offered a motivational speech and made a deal with the kids: If they maintain good grades, he will visit them next year. They agreed to try hard and strive in their education.
Boneta wants to promote this organization’s mission and help create social awareness among young people by virtue of his celebrity status, especially among members of his fan club, who have already organized fundraising events to donate school supplies. “Before donating, go to see this school and the kids. It’s amazing to watch with your own eyes the work that’s done. I think it’s something fundamental to the country, something so basic as food and schooling for the children. I invite you to give whatever you can, to give a little of what we receive,” he said.
When asked what satisfaction he gains from supporting these children, the actor answered that he was not the source of inspiration—it is the other way around. The last time he spent time in San Miguel he met Filo, a girl from Casa Hogar Don Bosco. She is 22 years old now and has become an independent woman, working as a Spanish teacher for small children. Boneta showed up to surprise her and congratulated her on her accomplishments this past year. “She is the one who gives me inspiration. To be able to see her capacity to grow, to progress—it is a privilege that she shares her success and joy with me,” he said.
This was Boneta’s second visit to the city; he was taking a break for a couple of weeks after months of tireless filming. The actor and singer said he will be coming back. “Besides the work with Feed the Hungry, I love the magic of the city and the authenticity of its people. I’m a San Miguel fan,” he concluded.