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Just two months after turning 15, Mareling was burned when a lamp containing paint thinner exploded. The explosion caused burns across 50% of her body (face, neck, chest, and upper and lower extremities).

She was admitted to Antonio Lenin Fonseca Hospital, where her family was told it was only a matter of time before she passed away. Fighting for their daughter’s life, Mareling’s parents took her to the APROQUEN Burn Center.

Due to the severity of her burns, Mareling remained in the ICU for 30 days. After 10 more days in the recovery room, Mareling was released from the hospital on January 10, 2007.



Ever since she was a child, Mareling has enjoyed drawing and all kinds of crafts. Her passion for art and design has always been an integral part of her personality. Her zest for life and perseverance allowed her to graduate high school with honors.

After the accident, returning to class was a difficult process. Mareling started by being home-schooled. With support from the psychologists and medical staff at APROQUEN, Mareling finally made it back into her school.

Upon graduating with honors from high school, Mareling received a scholarship to the Central American University where she chose to pursue a career in Graphic Design. From then, Mareling embarked on a journey to turn her passion for drawing into a profession and again graduated with honors as a graphic designer.

Today she is 23 years old and works as a Junior Graphic Designer at CEM-JWT communications agency, managing large and important accounts for various major companies throughout Nicaragua.