Hello everybody! My name is Carter Carlson and I was co-leader for the day along with Demetrio Rodriguez. Today we traveled to an organization known as Niños Con Una Esperanza. For those of you that don’t know, that means Children With Hope. The organization was founded by a husband and wife who felt that children should not be working in the town’s dump. And as time progressed and the organization grew, it transpired to a center for all children to come and learn – like a Boys And Girls Club!

We got to play with the children today during their lunch breaks. They were all about ages 5-13. We ate an awesome lunch of rice, chicken, fish, plantains and eggplants! After lunch we took a tour of the facility which included a stop at their church and a few old classrooms. We then headed off toward the city Dump, where we hiked up a MOUNTAIN of trash. The trash there has been accumulating for over 50 years. The children used to work with their parents in the dump until they were removed and started going to Niños Con Una Esperanza. It is filled with many different dangers such as large trucks un-aware of their surroundings and many different piles of trash that would catch on fire. Beyond more convenience, the entire day – minus seeing a girl in the dump – was one that I, and many would say, “Is For The Books.”

Now, on to our CAP Project. We hosted a meeting with our other members to decide what our Community Action Project would be. After a 45 min discussion we decided to re-paint the community center for the organization we are helping and we will add a fence to the outside to keep children safe. There are multiple teams that will be focusing on their particular task at hand and in just about a week we will be finishing it. But first, we must present to the organization known as Femucamo. It is an organization of women from San Luis who dedicated themselves to help better their community.

Carter- Today we saw so many different things that you would not be able to experience through a TV screen. I really enjoyed playing with all of the energetic children. They all seemed happy to have us there, which made my day a whole lot better. The part I wasn’t a big fan of today was the hike up into the dump. We crossed many rivers with mysterious liquids and we saw 2 or 3 different fires burning off in the distance. It was truly unsettling.

Demetrio – With everything happening around me, it is hard to tell if I am either awake or I am dreaming; no one should live in terrible conditions, we have the power, money, and capabilities of building a safe and healthy environment. “The World Is Yours.” – Nas.