Hello all! This is Grace, the first student leader del dia. Today was Global Business Day, so we structured our day around answering this question: what responsibility do agro-export companies have to give back to the local community.
We did this by venturing to a local farm in the nearby city Tireo owned by Juan Suriel. His farm took me by surprise because when I was told we were visiting a “local farmer” I imagined a sole farmer working in his garden with maybe a few animals but instead we were able to see large crops of lettuce, tomatoes, celery, cucumbers, and much more. One of the farmers talked to us about not only the planting process, but about selling locally vs. exporting goods and a farmers relationship with exporting companies. I really enjoyed learning about local farming but the greenhouses we talked in were very, very hot.
After a delicious lunch of beans, rice, meatballs, and potato salad we visited World Agro Market, an exporter of produce with its main site based in Constanza. Here we learned about the process of exporting cucumbers, the employees of the business, and where all of the cucumbers go (including the fact that many if the cucumbers we saw would later end up in New Jersey!).
This day was also very exciting because we had our first English classes! After getting into groups with another glimpser and a teen ambassador from the DR and planning a lesson we headed to the local school to have our first class. This was very fun and rewarding for all but was not without its challenges. A few groups (mine included) had planned for an advanced class but ended up teaching a beginning class. I do not know Spanish so communicating with a class that didn’t know English required some creative actions but thankfully the Spanish speakers really stepped up and taugh great classes. There is no question that both the teachers and the students are very excited for our next class.
Being El Leader Del Dia today was a challenging in some ways but also very rewarding in others, but it has also left me very tired. I’m ready to knock out, but before that ghost stories are being told and I don’t want to miss out!
ps. Thank you for your wonderful comments! They mean a lot to those of us here.