Vanessa Flores of Joliet has the middle name of Amor which means love in the Spanish language. As she grows up, this middle name her parents gave her seems to fit her well, her mother Olga said.
Flores, a 2017 Joliet Central High School graduate, now attends Southeastern University in Lakeland, FL where she plans to obtain a major in child and family ministries. She said her faith in God and the desire to help others led her to this decision, as well as her community service in her younger years which gave her a grasp on what needs are in the world.
Flores said when she was 15 years old, she traveled with a group from her church, Joliet First Assembly, to Los Angles to work with a ministry called the Dream Center. The group worked for 10 days with the Adopt-a-Block program.
The group went into designated neighborhoods to find what needs needed to be filled and executed a plan. Flores said they dropped off groceries, mowed lawns, delivered goods and so on.
“Each morning and night we invested ourselves in a different area,” Flores said.