Hi! This is Grace Hoffenkamp and Leslie Delgado, we got to be the Leaders del Día for our first day of our community action project at Bejuco Aplastado. We started by waking everyone at seven in the morning with the greatest hype song ever, The Eye of the Tiger on the bullhorn. Once we arrived at the Bejuco Aplastado we got right to work and learned what we had to do. Although the project of building a miniature concession baseball stand for the community required more experience than we had to offer, we still kept positive attitudes and helped out where we could. There were four main tasks we were given which were, building benches, digging a ditch for pipes, building the walls of the cafeteria, and mixing cement. Once we had time for a break, a couple glimpsers took the opportunity to buy a refreshing cold bottle of soda to cool off from the hot sun. After the first sip, we felt rejuvenated and alive once again. This was only the beginning of a three-day project.
After we got back from Bejuco Aplastado we got the chance to show some appreciation for our supporters that have made this whole trip and experience possible by writing them all thank you letters. Then we had some free time where we were able to just hangout and relax, some of us played sports or bonded with the kids here at La Fundacion Un Nuevo Futuro. The kids here are so kind yet so sassy. They have played a key role in our journey here in Bonao. They always greet us with hugs and whenever we are feeling down, we know they’re there to bring us back up! Then like every night we all had dinner together which was arroz con leche, or rice pudding. Finally, finishing off with our typical nightly meeting and free time until bed time and lights out.
This day and this trip as a whole has taught us to be thankful for what we have in our lives and to continue to work for what we want, even if our hands need to get a little dirty. Being around the community members has taught us about the importance of dedication, teamwork, and leadership. They have shown us dedication on many occasions, such as starting the project before we even arrived and having all the materials ready to go. They have displayed teamwork by letting us help out and work alongside them to make this project come to life. In terms of leadership, we have learned that there is no rigid definition to how a leader can go about their tasks, and that the most successful leaders are the ones that do it having fun in their own way.