For Goleta resident Noe Gonzalez, Christmas came a little early this year. That’s because Gonzalez was one of just four people to be featured on Sonando Contigo, a special episode which appears several times a year as part of the popular Spanish-language TV show, El Show de Cristina.
The idea of Sonando Contigo is to give Hispanic families in need a chance at a better life, and Gonzalez - a young Mexican-American from Santa Barbara County - was certainly deserving. At the age of 19 Gonzalez was orphaned, living with his deaf brother while he worked and attended school. Still a teenager, he was the primary means of support for his small family. Although he dreamed of becoming an engineer, Gonzalez’s plans were cut short because he did not own a computer and was forced to drop an important class due to lack of financial support.
The show, hosted by , and airing on Univision, changed Gonzalez’s life in a flash. With a donation from Washington Mutual, he received a bike, a $2,000 gift card for groceries, $15,000 for living and educational expenses, and - best of all - a brand new computer to do his homework on.
Since then, Gonzalez has been able to complete all his school assignments and is getting around just fine on his new bike. It should be just the jump-start he needs to make his dreams come true. If you want to see more stories like Gonzalez’s, tune into Univision at 10 p.m. on Monday, June 11.