With this, I would also like to say hello to the rest of the people who are reading this blog about our adventures in the city of Constanza!
Today was Education day. For breakfast, we had sandwiches with ham, cheese, tomatoes, mayonnaise and ketchup. Then, we discussed our plan for the day. At first, the original plan had been to go to the orphanage and play around with the kids. However, plans changed and we found ourselves unable to go. Instead, we went to visit a Dominican high school. There we got to talk to groups of kids who had stayed behind after a test to talk to us (They were bribed with an extra five points on the exam. The teacher calls it motivation, I call it bribery). We learned what they think about their school and the differences in both of our school systems.
Today’s speakers were part of a teaching organization called Quisqueya Aprende Contigo. It’s dedicated to teaching adults who have not previously had the opportunity to learn to read and write. The program’s teacher and two of her students shared stories about how learning to read and write has given them the opportunity to identify and appreciate the world around them for the first time. Afterwards, we took some group pictures with our speakers and continued on with our day.
As usual, free time was filled with laughs and funny stories. Today’s free time, I can say, brought us closer together as a group. A large group sat on the staircase sharing stories and jokes, while a smaller group learned to play poker (we bet candy).
The rest of the day consisted of group chats about our experiences in the school today and newfound understanding of our own educations, expressed through some games and group chats.
Being here in Constanza with this group has helped me in so many ways. To begin, I feel stronger and even girlier. I’ve only been here for seven days and I already feel like I can make such a difference in the world. It’s inspiring and even therapeutic to get to hang out with such amazing people.
Today was the first time I’ve been a leader of such a big group. This was a nice new experience for me. It was really refreshing to have everyone listen to me. Today’s experience helped me to grow as a leader and now I know what to do to be an even better leader next time.