Time Capsule Letter
How times flies! We can’t believe it has already been so long since our Dominican Republic trip ended! We can still hear all your vivacious laughter from over the palm trees. From all of us on the lodge, we want to say thank you for your effort, participation and energy that you put into the global health track projects this Spring Break. We could not of done it without you!
We have fond memories of waking up to the smells of pancakes and the loud squawks of the neighbouring goats and guinea fowls. Of heading on our way to work sites and hospital visits, amongst the intermittent pouring rain and glorious sunshine. And the adventure days, the beautiful waters, delicious fresh virgin pina coladas and white sandy beaches.
We know that you guys are probably back with school, but we wanted you to know that we will forever remember the laughs and good times that we shared. I hope that you know your time spent in the Dominican Republic did truly make a lasting impact on the communities.
You will forever be a part of the work done at Cano Dulce, you guys started the hard work in building a bathroom for Gabriel and his family. Having access to a bathroom is so integral to overall health, access to sanitation and dignity. The children at Las Canas school will always remember you as the first every vitamin distribution at their school. And you all go down in history as the largest medical brigade done by only 7 students!! Thank YOU for all your effort and hard work.
We hope that you take the skills and knowledge from this trip into all aspects of your life, and that you remain to be globally engaged, hardworking and motivated to make a different to the wellbeing of people all over the world.
Not to mention the hard work you guys did, we also had so much fun! You guys made the group as special as it was by being so close knit and inclusive.
Allison, you were a superstar the entire program, we are blessed you got to celebrate your 17th birthday with us.
Emily, we hope to see you a third time here! We still talk about how impressed we were with you saving the bird in your bathroom
Ethan, your comments and questions during reflection time were impeccable. Keep expressing yourself and those bright thought you have.
Jessica and Lilly, you two were the dream team, you worked so well together in the community and demonstrated to the rest of the group what cooperation means.
Kaia, we were blown away by your maturity, curiosity and dedication. You are a were a model student.
Rohir, you were such dedicated laborer in all aspects of the program, you worked so hard on that septic tank hole and still had energy to work out nearly everyday!
GHT – you were amazing!
Please stay connected!
Hilary and Loubens
Saturday March 9, 2019
All Global Health Track students arrived safe and sound in the Dominican Republic!
The first day was very relaxed, as most had experienced a long journey to get to the tropical destination. The beach was visited and some swim tests were done at the local pool at the Indalo lodge. Students did some ice breakers before sitting down for orientation and community ethics reflections, in order to get fully prepared for the busy, exciting, fulfilling week ahead!
Sunday March 10, 2019
Today was the first day working on the Global Heath Initiative and we went to Cano Dulce. We worked on a bottle house bathroom for Gabriel and his family. We started by measuring and fitting chicken wire to one side of the frame. We then strung wire up on the other side and filled the inside with empty plastic water bottles collected by the local community. We had a traditional lunch at another locals house, and ate fresh organic honey that he makes form his bees.
We are nearly done on the first day and we are all ready for bed! We came back and relaxed by the pool and at the beach before dinner and after we learned about Human Security. An exciting, grueling, fun-filled day for GHI but we can’t wait to get out tomorrow!
Monday March 11, 2019
Today we were able to tap into the medical aspect of our trip. We spent the morning learning about the different sections of a medical brigade and tried our hand in some practice situations. By 11 o’clock, we were inside the walls of a local clinic and shadowed a doctor, who taught us how she runs the clinic and about the medical system in the Dominican Republic.
After a filling lunch, we headed to the nearby school, set up stations and distributed multi-vitamins to children. The children came to us with the widest smiles and the biggest hearts! This was a great opportunity for us to practice spanish and learn more about the ways of the life of the Dominican people. After some relaxation and dinner, the GLA groups viciously debated a topic related to the DR. The night was finished off with some more relaxation and lots of laughs!
Lilly and Jessica
Tuesday March 12, 2019
These past couple of days have been filled with hard work from all the kids. Today we went to Dudu Lagoon where we relaxed and swam by a sparkling blue lagoon. The kids soaked up the sun, played volleyball, and explored a small cave near the lagoon.
After a delicious lunch at Dudu Lagoon, we went to Playa Grande Beach. Everyone laid on the warm sand where we were served pina colodas in hollowed pineapples. We also went in the ocean and swam along with the big waves that washed upon the shore. Today was a very peaceful day to enjoy the beauty of Dominican Republic and relax.
Wednesday March 13, 2019
Dear everyone at home,
We are having the best time ever. Today we went to Polanco on brigade trip.We had just under 50 patients and worked from 10:00 am, to 2:00pm (With breaks for lunch of course). We learned many games the children played and got to experience an official medical brigade.
After the brigade we came back to base to enter data and have free time. Then we learned about Hatian and Dominican history from our very own counselors Loubens and Junior. Today was full of eye opening experiences and we’re exited to work on our bottle bathroom tomorrow.
Kaia and Emily
Today we returned to the village of Cano Dulce where we continued the task of building a bathroom out of empty plastic bottles. Far ahead of the expected pace, we started the task of mixing and spreading cement. The heat made this assignment particularly strenuous. While part of the group work on the bottle bathroom, the others started digging a hole (7 x 6 x 4), in which the septic tank would be placed. Digging was also grueling due to the heat.
We ate lunch at the same house as Sunday, again enjoying a traditional Dominican meal that consisted of pork, rice, and vegetables. As the day grew to its completion, we had made a large dent in the septic hole, and almost completed the cementing of the walls in the bathroom. At the end of the hot day, Hilary treated us to ice cream, and we returned to the lodge around 4:00. We truly enjoyed the opportunity to not only help those in need, but also talking, playing, and practicing our Spanish with the lovely residents of Cano Dulce!