just want you to know...

6:56 PM Marcie Parson 2 Comments

... that we're working hard.

Bottle School

This project is well, dirty. 
We take 5 hour shifts of sitting in the dirt and stuffing plastic bottles with trash. We have hundreds if not thousands of bottles stuffed, and 2 classroom walls are about ready to be filled with bottles! It is a LOT of hard work, but the kids we work with make it all worth it. We're determined to get it done in two weeks!


The soilet is FINISHED! Hallelujah! Well done Bryce and Ashley. We're so excited for this school to have a sanitary latrine that doesn't contaminate their water.

Business Classes

Bryce held a few business classes that taught basic business principles to small business owners. He enjoyed it so much that he decided to hold a Business Seminar at Vivero Empresas for a larger audience. He taught the material himself (with translation by Amanda) alongside another keynote speaker. It was very successful, and Bryce rocked. He went home on Wednesday, and we miss him (especially Charlie, who is now the only boy living with 6 girls).

Dance Classes

Charlie "Chinito" Kaing is the token Asian volunteer. People stare at him even more than they stare at us white girls. He can't speak a lick of Spanish, but he somehow manages to communicate with everyone he meets. I still cannot comprehend it. Anyways. He likes to dance, and so he is teaching hip-hop workshops to improve the self-esteem of at-risk youth through dance. It's an awesome project, and I must say, it's a pretty fun class as well - why yes, I did indeed attend his b-boy class.

Tamarindo Water

Well this project is most certainly the one that consumes most of my time. Julia and I have been working hard to provide this community with clean water and eliminate the numbers of water-borne diseases there. Last week, we held a general meeting with the community informing them about the project, and we enlisted the help of several community leaders in spreading the word to the rest of the community who did not attend the meeting. This week, we spent two days visiting almost every house in the community to inform them about the water purification workshops we would be holding.

We held two workshops this week: one Wednesday afternoon and one this morning (Friday). The workshops were extremely important because in order to qualify for a filter, you must attend a workshop. In collaboration with the community nurse and MPowering People, we taught about the water-borne diseases in Tamarindo, water purification methods, as well as water filtration. At the end of the workshops we handed out surveys to assess the eligibility of participants (a certain number of criteria had to be met), and we proudly handed out vouchers for water filters to every person who attended. The filters will be picked up and distributed next Wednesday!

Today we discovered that the majority of the community works ridiculous hours in the salt factories and could not attend our meetings. Solution to the problem? Hold a workshop on the weekend! How simple! 

We walked around the town today stirring up interest for one more workshop to be held this weekend. We talked to people on the street, storekeepers, and even went inside a salt packaging factory and held a mini workshop while they were working! This meant that our volunteers actually stepped in and took over some of the work while the workers filled out surveys!

We've been incredibly resilient with all of our setbacks, and I'm confident this project will be successful!

Other projects:
English classes have been going super well. I'm getting to know the students, and they are a riot. We have one more week of classes before our final exam, fiesta, and mini-graduation. We're still working on painting the pediatric unit of the hospital, but we've mostly done a lot of prep work and sketching. Pictures to come! Julia and Cheryl are still working hard of their patient education plans to give to the nurses at Heodra Hospital. Jamee has almost selected all of the families who will be given chicken coops to supplement their income. Jamee and Cheryl have been working with a special needs child at a nearby orphanage. and last but not least, we are ALL involved in conducting needs assessments in neighboring communities for future HELP teams.

Sorry for the novel. Team Nica rocks and we're "doing good" down here!