Quote of the Day: “Give a man a fish; you have fed him for today. Teach a man to fish; and you have fed him for a lifetime.” – Chinese Proverb
Question of the Day: What are the similarities and differences of poverty in the US and Ecuador?
Hello everyone from the leaders of the day (Helena and Lisa)! Today we started off bright and early in the morning at 6:30 AM to head off to the beautiful city of Salinas, a town with one of the best cheese, chocolate, and woven products in Ecuador. The Glimpsers split up into three groups and rotated between salt mines, a chocolate factory workshop, and shopping. For the salt mines activity, we helped pick up trash to clean the area and splashed salt water onto the area of plants to create more salt mine landscape. It was truly a beautiful sight with greenery, streams of water, and breath taking mountain landscape. In the second activity, working at the chocolate factory, the Glimpsers learned the process of making Salinas’ chocolate and had the chance to taste and buy all the different kinds of chocolate they make. While shopping, students had the chance to tour the different types of shops as well as the community. It was difficult to walk up the hills to get to the shops (the elevation is always an element here), but it was worth it in the end.
After the activities, the Glimpsers finally reached the pizza everyone longed for. During lunch, we had an intense singing session that even the locals couldn’t resist. We sang songs from various artists that reminded us of home such as Bruno Mars, Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, etc. When lunch was over, we had the chance to speak with Padre Antonio Polo, an Italian priest that had helped Salinas develop economic solidarity (which is a society that collaborates like a co-op). He shared an inspiring story of how he came to Salinas and helped the community to grow into a bustling center of cheese, chocolates, dried fruits, textiles, and more! Throughout his time speaking, the Glimpsers were moved by his positivity, openness to share with the community, and the history of Salinas in general. He was willing to answer ALL of our questions with a smile and opened our perspective to how we viewed aid and development and what we can do as a community to help. Additionally, Swiss volunteers had come to Salinas to help the society out with the business aspect, truly exemplifying the quote of the day.
Returning back to the hotel, the Glimpsers enjoyed a quick break before heading into the reflection session of Deconstructing Poverty. We had a seminar, talking about how poverty effects Ecuador compared to the US. The Glimpsers brought up the changes they could make in their communities from their experiences. As leaders, we had the courage to step up and use our voices to lead a truly fantastic day with meaningful and impacting moments. We also showed commitment to our roles as leaders of the day by taking all of the tips from our Global Glimpse Leaders and from previous leaders to become role models for our peers. The Glimpsers showed compassion through listening to our speaker and giving them our respect. We were moved by how genuine, humble, and welcoming the people of Salinas were to us. They helped us experience everything that the community had to offer. The experience impacted us personally through the fact that it shaped our perspectives to view problems that could be solved through the community instead of outside forces. In Salinas, the town did not start off great because their original cheese idea had failed, but through trial and error, they were able to grow through persistence and patience. They had a closer cohesive bond with one another, helping each other through hardships. There is always something to learn from communities, such as Salinas, that the Glimpsers will take back with them.
Big Love shout-outs to everyone in the community of Salinas who let us tour around their city, expanding our knowledge and mind-set. Big Love to the Glimpsers who remained composed with speakers while getting EXTREMELY high in energy throughout the day. Big Love to our Global Glimpse Leaders who had helped us (the leaders of the day) by giving us tips and constant reminders. Big Love to our Program Coordinators for coordinating this beautiful day. Big Love to Luis and the rest of our tour guides for opening their arms and welcoming us into their community. Big Love to Padre Antonio Polo for sharing his amazing story with us. Big Love to everyone back home reading this – your Glimpsers are counting down the days until they are able to see you again. Whenever we read the comments at night together at the meeting, our faces are always filled with joy from the support that everyone has shown. Although we only have 4 days left until our departure from Ecuador, we will use every second to cherish these great experiences with the people around us.
Tasting for Quality Assurance (And Pleasure)
High School Musical 2: Nothing Can Stop Us From Singing (Except Pizza?)