We have already experienced several great things about this beautiful country, Nicaragua, and this amazing city, Esteli. We’ve spent time with children from a local high school, and we were given the outstanding opportunity to enjoy time with several younger kids from an elementary school. We also travelled to a beautiful waterfall and were able to swim in the water.
Today was a little different, because we experienced one of the most impoverished locations in Esteli. The place we travelled to was called basurero which also means “the dump”. It was an intense experience for everyone, but it was one that each and every one of us needed to see. We were able to talk to an amazing and courageous woman, Francisca, who shared an amazing story about how life was like in the dump.
It was extremely tough to see how actual human beings were forced, by their will to survive, to work at such a horrid place. They collect aluminum, plastic, or paper all day long and sell them for seemingly nothing to us. Most of their food comes from the trash they go through and their only source of water is a single well, which is quite a long walk away from what they call home. The people who live at the dump (or near it) also share their home/workplace with over three dozen dogs, a couple horses, and even hideous oversized birds. It’s unfathomable how these people are able to put up with these awful conditions, one of which is a particular odor that is unexplainable and just flat out awful.
Francisca also mentioned something which I found surprising, and gave me a whole different perspective on education. She said that although kids who grow up in the dump acquire a high school education, they still are unable to find work and are stuck in the vicious cycle of poverty and working in the dump.
There are no pictures of our field trip to the dump, because we want to respect the people who live there and not make them feel like they are animals or feel uncomfortable.
This trip was a life-changing experience for every one of us, because it gave us a whole new perspective on life back at home. We discussed all this at our self reflection after the field trip. Everyone explained how this made them appreciate everything they have at home a significant amount more. We described how we took things for granted at home, but now we realize the value of education and appreciate how hard are parents are working to give us the greatest life they possibly can.
After the self reflection we were able to relax and unwind until our English classes. These classes went really well because there were more students this time, so no students from our delegation were left without someone to teach. It seemed like all the individuals we taught were satisfied and hopefully will come back for more lessons in the future.
Over all the day went really smoothly and it was a great learning experience for everyone. The group is getting much closer and we all are having a wonderful time!
P.s. Hi mom and dad! I love you and I miss you.