Decidedly Academic. Distinctively Christian.
Day 2 for the team included an eventful trip to the little village of Azua. Azua, the village where Margarite Mota grew up, is about three hours from where the team is staying. It was an experience to remember, driving through Santo Domingo amongst the craziness of Dominican rush hour traffic.
Upon arrival to the church, there were approximately 100 children waiting for the students to perform and eat lunch with. Quickly, the team of students entertained the little ones with puppets, hugs, and smiles. The whole team sang songs and dance, the puppet team performed “Daniel and the Lions Den”, and Michael Gaydos shared his testimony as his mother translated.
All children were fed a delicious lunch of arroz con pollo (chicken and rice) and the students were able to pass out shoes, school supplies, and dental kits. The dental kits were donated by the work of Jasmine Vogel, parent of team member Gavin Vogel, who are both on the trip.
A group of students (both male and female) painted little girls’ nails and held babies while their mothers were pampered.
After a quick goodbye, the team was back on the road back to the hotel, with a quick pit stop at “Bon” for some ice cream.
We left earlier than I would have liked and then had to drive for a long while. I found the driving really interesting because the traffic is crazy. In America our traffic is usually really nice and pretty smooth. In the DR there is constant honking. When we finally got to the church the poverty was immediately apparent. The kids looked tired and hungry and didn’t want to sing, dance or play. When we gave them toys and food their eyes brightened. They became less shy and more ready to play. The girls and a few guys painted nails of both boys and girls. Then we went to give the moms shirts. The moms were desperate for shirts and there were a lot of people grabbing at me. The food that the Dominican ladies made for us was amazing. All in all I learned that the kids are happy and ready for us to help them. They are generous to each other and the community is very tight knit. I wish I could go back to help them even more.
Today we had the privilege to go to a church. We sang songs and did a puppet show. We fed the kids some food and gave them toys and shoes. Some of us also painted nails. Today was a fun day!