Today was a very interesting and exciting day. After a very early morning and scenic drive out into the mountains, we made it out to the Monte Frio coffee farm. We were given a lesson on how coffee is grown, from germination to the final harvest stage. We were put into three groups and then we were put to work. We had one group filling up bags with soil, another one setting up the bags for seed transplant, and finally one group weeding all the plants. All the groups had a chance to do every one of the jobs. We worked for about three hours and then we had lunch with all of the workers. We had a chance to talk to the one of the members of FECADES, which is the local federation for coffee growers and agriculturists. It was interesting to learn how far they come and how close they are to achieving their goal of processing and selling all of their product. It was an experience that will definitely make us appreciate the next cup of coffee I drink.
We had many highlights throughout our day. The activity that was definitely a highlight was being able to eat lunch with the locals and learn about their lives. It was very inspiring to hear about their hopes and dreams. It is great to learn that there is large progress in agriculture in countries like the DR. Another highlight was being able to work with volunteers from Germany. We learned that even though we are from completely different parts of the world, we are all here with a common goal of helping and learning at the same time.
It’s been a very challenging experience for me being as the leader of the day. I learned that you wanted to speak up and tried to do as much as you can so that you can be a good role model of everyone. I got a lot of benefit from it. I considered it as a really good lesson and learned from it.