Charina is 20 years old and the reason that Pasitos de Jesus first began in 2007. She is a lovely girl with Down Syndrome. With several misconceptions about special needs in the Dominican Republic, many families see children with these conditions as a shame on the family. The parents often feel at fault or punished by God to bear a child with special needs. In Charina’s case, her mother’s shame manifested itself by quarantining her in the backyard with the dogs. She was raised in horrific conditions, in isolation, and as an animal. When her mother was electrocuted to death in 2007, Charina escaped from the backyard and was found in the street, on all fours, behaving like a dog. This was the first time any neighbors realized she existed. The community brought Charina to Dalma Florian, whom the Lord led to take her in, and so began the ministry of Pasitos de Jesus.
Current Age: 21 years old
Location: Pasitos de Jésus