Mauricio Quijada moved to the Mission District from El Salvador in 1984 when he was eight years old.


Posted between the Mission and Potrero Hill, he has watched San Francisco experience a tech boom, a bubble burst, and another boom. Today, he works as a print manager at NativeGraphix and H.O.M.E.Y, which create and fund educational programs for young locals.

Quijada was involved in street gangs as a teenager, and he was grateful to leave them behind as he began exploring social work and community outreach.

Though the city has completely changed, he said young people face the same issues, like single parenting and impossibly high rent. To ease these struggles, Quijada teaches young people to be proud of their culture.

“Be open-minded about what folks have to say, then you can make your judgements,” he said, adding that young people should be open to learning from criticism.