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Quick answer
"Esforzarse por" is a pronominal verb phrase which is often translated as "to make an effort to", and "para" is a preposition which is often translated as "for". Learn more about the difference between "esforzarse por" and "para" below.
esforzarse por(
ehs
-
fohr
-
sahr
-
seh
 
pohr
)
A pronominal verb phrase combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and always uses a reflexive pronoun. (e.g. Se dio cuenta del problema.)
pronominal verb phrase
1. (general)
a. to make an effort to
Se esforzó por aparentar tranquilidad, pero se notaba que estaba muy nervioso.He made an effort to appear calm, but you could tell he was very nervous.
b. to try hard to
Mis amigos se esforzaron mucho por que mi estancia en la ciudad fuera agradable, y lo consiguieron.My friends tried really hard to make my stay in the city a pleasant one, and they succeeded.
c. to strive to
Marta se esfuerza por hacer su trabajo lo mejor posible. Es una perfeccionista.Marta strives to do her job as well as possible. She's a perfectionist.
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para(
pah
-
rah
)
A preposition is a word that indicates the relationship between a noun and another word (e.g. He ran through the door.).
1. (used to express intention or design)
a. for
Lo hice para ti.I did it for you.
Estas vitaminas son para niños.These vitamins are for children.
2. (used to express purpose)
a. for (used before a gerund)
Lo quiero para cocinar la pasta.I want it for cooking the pasta.
b. in order to (used before an infinitive)
Para ser salvavidas, tienes que saber nadar muy bien.In order to be a lifeguard, you have to know how to swim really well.
c. to (used before base form)
¿Para qué quieres el dinero? Lo quiero para aprender a cantar.What do you want the money for? I want it to learn to sing.
3. (used to express direction)
a. for
Salimos mañana para Londres.We are leaving for London tomorrow.
b. to
¿Para dónde se dirige ese tren?Where is that train going to?
4. (used to express time)
a. for
Tengo que encontrar un compañero de apartamento para el mes que viene.I need to find a roommate for next month.
b. by
Tenemos que entregar el trabajo para fin de mes.We have to hand the work in by the end of the month.
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