Today our global glimpse group went to two different locations in order to learn about the positive and negative impacts of aid in a developing world. My peers and I went to Ministerio de Inclusion Economica y Social (MIES), and Fundacion Betesda: Foundation of Social and Familial Assistance, both located in Guaranda. We all learned a lot of positive impacts the MIES institution gave to the state Bolivar, providing assistance to single mothers with multiple children, the elderly who can no longer support themselves, and to disabled people. MIES is government funded, and those in need may receive monthly grants based on their situations. Betesda was a gym we visited that supported mostly teens and young adults who are struggling with drug addictions, and they support them with rehab, spirituality, finding stable homes, and staying in a close-knit community. Unlike MIES, Betesda is run in a public area, as to be affordable to the volunteers, as their income is not high enough to pay rent in a privately owned area.

Once we stepped inside the cafeteria to speak with two of the women who were working for MIES, one of my peers realized that the sign of the nearest classroom said “Ninos de 0-2”, which made us a little sad, knowing that a child as young as 6 months might have to be staying in childcare for so long until their parent(s) can pick them up. On the other hand, it was so good to see that the two women we met with were so dedicated to their work with helping people in their community. The Betesda volunteers were also very inspirational to us, and were so kind as to give us a zumba lesson in addition to telling us about their organization. (Mami and Papi, I actually worked out). I was surprised when being LDD today (Lider del dia/ Leader of the day), because my peers really did enjoy going to the two places, and had really thoughtful answers to the question of the day, which was: What are the positive and negative impacts of aid in the developing world?  I thought I would have a hard time taking on the role of a leader, but my group really did give me so much love and support, making me proud of myself, and proud of my peers for being so helpful. I learned a lot about how important the aid given in Guaranda is to the local community and even people all over the state of Bolivar, and that it isn’t so hard to step up as a leader.