Greetings from Bonao! My name is Lauren and I’m a Global Glimpse student from San Francisco, CA. As leader of the day, not only did I get to write this blog but I also had a lot of responsibilities for the group. Assuming the role of a leader was a great way to test out my communication abilities and I was given a chance to take charge and lead the group. This was especially exciting because today was our first day working on the CAP project, or the Community Action Project, which is a three-part project we will be working on during our time here in Bonao. This year, Global Glimpse is working with the Federación de Campecinos Hacia el Progreso, a farmer’s federation in the mountains of Bonao.
To start off this exciting day we had a quick breakfast with freshly squeezed pineapple juice, made by our lovely chef Aracelys. Then, we boarded the bus to head to the Federación, where we spent the day learning about the different purposes of the Federación, including coffee production and bamboo trees. We met the founder of this place, Esteban Polanco, who created the Federación in order to protect the rights of displaced farmers. Though this was his original goal, he has achieved much more and has done so in various ways. He created and installed two hydroelectric in some of the mountain communities, as well as offers an education to many of the kids living in those communities.
As Global Glimpse students, our main goal for the day was to discover something we could help the Federación with, and we did so by interviewing a few of the workers, and even Esteban himself. Thanks to our wonderful Spanish translators, we brainstormed some really cool projects! A pressing thing the Federación needs help with is attracting more tourists in order to stimulate a greater income for the organization. The organization is also a hostel where people can stay to meditate and enjoy the beautiful scenery. Global Glimpse students, as well as the people we interviewed, thought that creating a playground or some sort of play-center would possibly attract more families with children, since the kids would have something to do. Nothing is definite as of yet, but stay posted to find out what we decide to do!