Thursday, January 9, 2014

Day 3 - Kaila

Today, we woke up at seven to a delicious breakfast that consisted of plantains, breadfruit and other starches. We packed art supplies and drove a tap tap to the school in Bigonet. The students of all levels welcome us with songs in creole. We facilitated two workshops where we taught the kids about the important benefits of trees. During the workshop, I had the opportunity to help the students and improve my creole. I really connected with some of the kids and they taught me so much about their language and culture. 

               (Kaila helping students)

After the workshops, we walked a mile to the community center where we were given more plantains, chicken and rice for lunch. I played games with the kids and taught them how to play hopscotch with the help of Mrs. Penniman's son, Emmet. We had the chance to look at and buy jewelry and stone carvings made by the Haitians. After buying some souvenirs for friends and family, I played more games with the kids and met a lot of amazing people.

Next we worked on taking care of the trees in Cormier that last year's delegation planted. We gave them compost and watered them. We didn't get to all of the trees today, but I definitely got great exercise from walking up and down many hills and pumping water from the well. I was inspire by the positive attitudes Haitians have even during exhausting and difficult times.

  (Ms. Penniman carrying water to a tree)

After taking care of the trees, we put the tools away and hung out at the community center. We got to talk and hang out while waiting for the tap tap. We got back to the hotel and most of us took a shower before dinner, myself included. For dinner we ate a rice dish, fish and bread. And dessert brought an absolutely delicious ice cream; definitely the best I've ever had. 

All in all, I learned a lot today about Haitian culture compared to American culture. The hospitality and positivity radiates from the people we worked with, even though they have almost nothing compared to us. It was honestly inspiring and I'm so excited to see what else the rest of the trip will bring! 

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