Adventures in Guatemala
Monday was a perfect day for the dump. It was warm and Heidi and I prepared the shampoo, nail polish and tattoos for the kids. To start the afternoon off, we were going to give the girls a manicure and give the boys temporary tattoos. They loved the idea. We had the girls form a line and they washed their hands. Then they came over to me and picked what colour of nail polish they wanted out of the big bag that I brought down from Canada. Painting their nails was an amazing experience. Just watching them watch me, made my heart smile. They were really excited afterwards to show off their new nails. The boys really enjoyed getting their tattoos as well. There was one little boy that kept holding his hand up all proud to show it off. It was precious.
There was one little girl that was extremely dirty. Her hair was matted and her face was filthy. She just had this look of sadness on her face that almost made you cry. Heidi was able to convince her to let us wash her hair.
The end result was amazing. She looked like a completely different girl! She was smiling and after Pastor Ruth brushed her hair she was more excited to play the games and do the seeds book. To see her transform from the girl in the first picture to the girl laughing and participating in the seeds activities was such a phenomenal thing.
The little kids got to colour a picture while the older kids did seeds. They were thrilled. They were concentrating so hard on making sure their pictures were beautiful and they all turned out just that. Beautiful.
There were two girls that actually live right at the dump, both were holding babies. After talking with these girls we found out that they were not allowed to put their little brothers down for any reason. We even offered to hold them so they could participate but they said their mother’s would be very angry. I felt bad for these girls because of the look of longing that was in their eyes.
Tuesday I went out with Yuli again to deliver to a bunch of schools that were just outside of Jalapa. We visited a school that had hydrangeas growing just outside the gates. They were huge! And so beautiful. I had to stop and have my picture taken in front of them.
We also visited a school that had a tragedy last year. While the children were out on break, a drunk driver drove off the road onto the field where the children were playing. After striking several children, the driver then ploughed into a small tienda (store) made of adobe (which is basically mud) there were a few students as well as a teacher in the tienda. Most of the people struck by the car were killed. Inside the tienda, the lady that owned it watched as her two daughters, who were playing in the field, were struck by the car and killed. Unfortunately, there is no happy ending to that story, but when Heidi and Mynor heard about it they immediately went to work. Letting people know about the tragedy allowed them to raise money instantly to help rebuild the school’s tienda in block and provided the entire inventory to be able to open again. The lives lost will not be forgotten by those in that town. The man that did it was actually caught and locked up for 3 years, though that sentence doesn’t seem long enough the main thing was that he was charged. There are pictures of the rebuild on the Seeds Guatemala Facebook page.
Wednesday Mynor and I had to take the motorcycle up into the mountains to deliver seedlings to a school that you cannot reach by a car. The road was so bad I even had to get off the bike at one point to allow Mynor to get it up the hill.
Thursday Mynor and I were up at 4am to get on the road to Chiquimullia, also known as the hottest place I’ve ever been. It was so hot, you didn’t have to move to sweat. I was told that it wasn’t even hot season, I get to go visit for 2 weeks right smack in the middle of hot season, that should be interesting. The school where we had the teacher training wanted to put us in their records so we signed a book stating that we had been there.
After lunch at domino’s, we headed back to Jalapa.
Friday, Heidi and I were up to make the snack for the dump. We had Santos go get everything we needed to make 100 tamalitos. We were going to the dump on Saturday to see if there are more kids that day that we can work with. It took us 3 hours, but we finally finished… not without some criticism about the texture of our tamalitos but hey! For 2 Gringas, I think we did alright.
Saturday we went back to the dump. It was a very different vibe on a Saturday. The kids were extremely dirty and lethargic almost. However we got them going and coloured with them and also played some games. Turns out Mondays actually have more older children to teach the seeds program to. We handed out clothing at the end. The kids were thrilled to get something new to wear. One little girl looked so unhappy before she got a new dress. Once she had it on she lit up like a she had just realized how beautiful she is. It was precious.
This little girl has a skin condition from the dirty water where she lives. We are trying to figure out if there is anything that we can do for her.
At the dump we are not sure just yet what the long term goal is. We know that we want to teach the kids skills that could improve their living situation. For now we are trying to get enough money to purchase new tables and stools for the kids to use when we are there. Right now the tables we use are dangerous because they are not stable and the kids just lean against them to rest their feet a little while they work or colour. We also need up to $50 Canadian to feed these children every week. We have been trying to cut down costs with food in any way and have found the tamolitos to be the most cost efficient. (Especially since there are 2 gringas making them!) If you feel in your heart that you would like to donate towards this ministry please visit the following website. Thank you for your help.
I also just wanted to say thank you to those who read my blog each week. I appreciate the support you all give me and I know that in the next few months that I’m here in Guatemala that God will use me in as many ways possible.
Originally posted to Adventures in Guatemala