For Rocio “Rosie” Villanueva, one of Hope For The Warriors 2022 Warrior’s Wish recipients, her well-being journey has not only led to new passions, but also a greater sense of community connection.
In 2001, Rosie and her family immigrated to the United States from Mexico when she was just 15 years old. Three months after arriving in the U.S., the tragic events of 9/11 took place, motivating Rosie to later enlist in the Army as a Bridge Engineer. During her 3 years of service, Rosie suffered a TBI, military sexual trauma, PTSD, and other injuries. While these injuries took a toll on her physical and mental well-being, Rosie remained resilient. She continued to seek help, and through her care with the VA, she was introduced to a PTSD art therapy program.
Recognizing the role art played in her life, Rosie knew it was something she wanted to continue to pursue on her well-being journey. After hearing her story, HOPE stepped in and granted her Warrior’s Wish by providing her with a backyard art studio as a place to grow into her craft.
The backyard art studio has not only been instrumental in helping Rosie pursue her passion, but it has also helped her continue to spread the benefits of art to others. For the past 4 years, Rosie and her children have been traveling to an orphanage in Mexico, to do art projects with the children. With the art studio, Rosie now has the space to store all the materials the children need and their ceramic art projects, making her impact even greater.