From waking up at 6:45, and eating a breakfast shortly after. We then took a shuttle to Brison, where we hiked 4 miles, mainly uphill, with high humidity and lots of sun. Luckily when we reached the family on the top of the mountain, we were then fed a delicious lunch of rice and beans. After being exhausted, we put in perspective that the native people do this everyday, whether getting water or food.
July 16th, 2017
Today, we experienced a whole new culture. We helped work on a house for a family of six, which involved mixing cement, posting chicken wire, separating bottles for insulation and finishing walls. We were able to interact with the family that we were building a house for, and other community members that were able to join and help. Being able to participate in this service learning experience was eye opening. After a long day of work we walked down to the beach, swam, had a photo shoot, and went back to the lodge for a delicious diner! Then, we spent time talking about all of our identities during our workshop. We ended the day by sitting by the pool, stargazing.
-Lucie, Mariah, and Lizzie <3
July 17th, 2017
Today we continued work at Caño Dulce. We persisted although the weather was incredibly hot. We made a lot of progress with the help of the masons and did great work on the house. We had a fun time with the kids and bonded as a team. Upon our return to the lodge we sat by the pool and bonded even more. Altogether today was a very productive day and we are really looking forward to snorkeling tomorrow.
July 18th, 2017
Today, we were fortunate enough to travel to Sosua and snorkel with the fish by the coral reefs. Along with that, we spent time interacting with the locals, perusing their stores, and purchasing Dominican goods to bring home and share with our loved ones. On our way home, the air conditioner unexpectedly gave out and we ended up opening up the windows and letting the wind blow through our hair!
Lucie, Lissa, and Cami <3
July 19, 2017
Today we went to the Haitian community of Severe to restore a school. When we arrived, one half of the group took a tour of the community and the other half started work on mixing cement and painting the walls. We learned a lot about how the Haitians living there do not have accessibility to many resources because of lack of documentation. We were surprised to find out that volunteer work can create a negative effect on the community. We hope to bring back this knowledge to our lives when we return from our trip. On the way back to home base, we stopped for ice cream and it was delicious. We learned more about charity having negative impacts during our lecture and it was a great way to end the long and educational day.
-Emma S. and Julia