What a day that we had today!!! From waking up at 5:30 am to lights out at 11. Waking up was kind of a struggle from having 1.5 hours being cut down from our normal wake up time, which is at 7:00 am. Walking out of our bedroom doors half asleep with constant winking of eyes, it all lead to a successful day.
As we start off our day with some ‘pan con queso'(cheese on a bread) at ‘Onaneys’, we all had the energy to wake up and were ready to work. We took the Gua Gua (bus) to the Instituto Dominicano de Investigaciones Agropecuarias y Forestales (IDIAF)- a government ran plantation base. As we met the two co-owners, we noticed that all the crops that are at the plantation are distributed throughout the Dominican Republic and Haiti. The main crops that are being grown at this planation are different kinds of green peas, mangos, corn, tomatoes, and bell peppers. After talking to the local workers, I noticed that a daily pay is $130 pesos and $2,000 pesos monthly, which is roughly equals $40USD. In addition, each workers work 8 hours and 5 days a week in extreme heat and humidity. For the amount of work, dedication, sweat, and persistence that is being put into this work, the compensation is very minimal. It was noted that all Glimpser on this trip, were working just as hard and sweating as if they never sweated like that in their lives. The work was hard, difficult, tiring, but all in all, we now know the reality of all agricultural workers and what they do for a living. The average workers that work at the greenhouses, are local members of the community. As the day went on, I learned to appreciate all the different types of foods that we eat throughout the day in our daily lives.
Next, we came back to the hotel and took showers. The cold water from the showers came in handy. We suddenly got ready, for our next activity— teaching the community English. As it started to rain on our way to the Middle School, we were all scared that our students were not going to show up. The community of San Juan de la Maguana tends to stay indoors and avoid the rain as much as possible. As we started the set up in our class room, thunder storms were constantly happening while it continued to rain. As time got closer to 5:00pm, which is what time English class starts, it was averaging about 4 students a class- so, all Glimpsers started to teach their class.
My class was a small class, only having 5 students, I noticed that it was easier and more convenient for the students as well because they had a lot more one on one communications which made them more comfortable about speaking english to the class.