Today, August 2nd 2018, we spent our day participating in many different activities and had the most fun and adventurous day yet! The day started off with waking up at 7 o’clock in the morning, and then we had breakfast an hour later. Our first activity was spent at Ebano Verde Reserva Cientifica, which is a reserva natural/area protegida (natural reserve/protected area). The reserve was built in the 1980s and has developed many changes throughout those years. The changes were evident when we went on our hike up the reserve. There are now clear trails for people to follow, and the gorgeous scenery is now more visible. Following our hour hike, we ate lunch, and then set off to a swim at a waterfall, which is a part of the natural reserve. After our visit at Ebano Verde Reserva Cientifica, we headed to our second activity at Divino Nino, a statue of Baby Jesus, which overlooks the astounding city of Constanza. We were in awe of the beautiful view and spent some time relaxing by taking pictures. After we finished sight-seeing, we gave our Community Action Project (CAP) proposal to the community leaders/representatives. For our project, we decided to build the community of Rio Grande a basketball court, which will be decorated with a large mural and flowers along the fence. After a successful meeting, we came back to the hostel to have Siesta Time until dinner. When we finished our meal, we had our nightly meeting and “passed the torch” to Keera and Zack, tomorrow’s Liders del Dia.

Question of the Day: What are the positive and negative impacts of tourism on local communities?

During the discussion, people found that tourism increases the revenue of developing countries, however the negative is that the overlap of many different cultures tend to diffuse the country’s true identity. This impacted us because we are both from developing countries that have a great deal of tourism, so we can truly understand the significance of this question. We both noticed how thoughtful everyone was throughout the day when asked to keep this question in the back of their mind, so we are extremely pleased with how engaged and considerate everyone was being. With that said, we will actively try to be more conscious about which stores we will shop from, the importance of language, and how culture can impact people in different ways.

Ben and Leakhana 

Dear Madre, I know I called like 5 times and then when you called back I wasn’t there so like… my bad, I am well and next time I get the chance I will call and hopefully you will pick up . I hope that everything is going smoothly in church, jobs, and in the family as a whole. Tell Matias I miss him and can’t wait to come back to show him up in Call of Duty. Tell Andres I miss his annoying jokes and that he should go out and get some sunlight <3 Tell Padre I miss him too and PLEASE inform grandma that I am not dead hahaha.
Love you all I guess <3
-Benji Grandma/Grandpa, Mom/Dad, Jasmine, and Anjou:
Thank you so much for holding my hand throughout this long journey, and for supporting my aspirations. Without you, I would not be the person I am today, and I appreciate you more as each day passes. Unfortunately, there are very limited chances for me to contact everyone, but I will try my best to do so. I think of you every day. I love you! <3
ixo Chanleakhana