Erin completing human knot
It’s day four of our trip and it’s been such an amazing experience so far! One of the major projects we have been working on is the mural. This is supposed to show kids why we need to recycle and take care of our environment. Before this trip I never payed attention to littering or recycling until I witnessed all the trash in the roads and rivers in Honduras. It taught me that we can’t take this world for granted and we need to learn to take better care of it.
P.S Mom and Dad, I love you guys!
Mike working hard!
Day four is coming to a close and I think it has been the best day yet! We woke up early, had breakfast and were out of the hotel and at OYE by 9:15am. There we met and spoke with Hector, an associate of Fé Alegria, dealing with many of the core issues in education. This was, so far, my favorite part of the trip because I got to really see first hand some of the base issues and what organizations like Fé Alegria and the government are doing about it. I also really enjoyed playing soccer with some Hondurans associated with OYE and sweating way too much. Can’t wait to see what the rest of the trip has in store for us!
P.S Dad- keep the NCAA Tournament updates coming!
Rachel planting a tree
Qué pasa Oshkosh? So far this week has been amazing! As a first semester Spanish student, it’s been really fun to try talking to the Honduran people. You can definitely tell they are trying to speak english with us as well which makes things a lot easier. The projects we are doing are separated into groups which gives us a chance to connect with the kids one on one. Today I learned Claudia and Haylee love American TV; such as Bones, The X-factor, and The Voice. They also love Justin Timberlake, but then again who doesn’t? I can’t get over how simple, but amazing, the food here is. Going back to Blackhawk is going to be a struggle after this. It’s safe to say I’m loving it here and I wish we could stay so much longer. There’s so much work to be done here and OYE seems to welcome the help. So until we’re back in Oshkosh it’s work, work, work for us!
P.S Mom and Dad if you guys ever figure this blog out, Hi and I love you guys!
The day started with another panel. This one talked about education. Presenting was Hector from the NGO Fé Alegria. This organization promotes education in communities, not just in individuals. He talked about the different eras of Honduras starting with the 80’s and 90’s where teachers were being killed for being “communists”. Then in the 90’s to early 2000’s there was a neoliberal move to privatized education. Lastly we talked about the Coup in 2009 that reconfigured the whole education system.
Next he talked about the identity crisis that the students have to face. They are stuck debating if they fit the role of rural farmer or urban citizen. This occurs especially when families move. Teachers need to have the mentality of whom they are teaching to. Also in terms of identity there is a religious, ethnic, and political divide.
The reality is that being a teacher in Honduras is a difficult job. Hector says it’s easier to be an assassin than to be a teacher. Although teachers by law make a minimum of 430 dollars a month, in many instances they are not given this age or have to wait an entire year to get paid. There also aren’t enough positions for teachers; so a teacher may stay in a bad condition just so he can keep his job. Less people are studying to be teachers because things look bleak; but out of every ten students that graduate high school only three have the economic means to go to college. We learned so much that it’s just too much to write so be sure to ask us more about the education system of Honduras!
The team with the recycling barrels
Next we split up to continue working on campaign and mural projects. The campaign students used their stencils they made to decorate their trash barrels. Then we took a field trip to go get art supplies. Next we worked on our poster and joked around. It was a really fun day and we got a lot accomplished.
The mural team made really good progress. We got the “Arte la Calle” stenciled on as well as the UW Oshkosh logo. There was a lot more progress on the globe as well. Emily had a lot of fun learning Spanish words from the two scholars Paolo and Wendy. Emily had the scholars put their handprints on her shirt.
To end the day both teams met up at a fantastic park to play soccer. The park contained a train museum so there were old train cars all around the park. We split into four different teams; two American teams and two Honduran teams. We played on a small concrete futsal court. It was really fun! Some of the scholar students brought siblings and we also got to meet the people that run the sports program. The American teams did surprisingly well but there is some suspicion that they went easy on us. After playing we had some tamales that some of the scholar’s mothers made and taught more scholars the wobble.
Interesting Blurbs About Guatemala
-We’ve got to see a volcano erupt (smokes and ash only)
-They typically only have spoons out as their dinner utensil even if it’s something you wouldn’t normally eat with a spoon. also only bowls
-Coffee cups are tiny but pack a lotta punch
-Toilet paper has to go in the garbage NOT the toilet. That applies everywhere here.
-So many stray dogs.
-Electric shower heads to heat the shower. You run the risk of a small shock when turning on/off the shower.
-Houses are gated with large cinder block walls so no one can see inside. Once inside, there’s typically a courtyard surrounded by rooms.
-Frelan, one of the farmers, wore flip flops as we climbed the volcano.
-Typically, ice isn’t used in drinks.
-Elementary school is typically the most education people in this area get. Further schooling is far from town and costs a lot of money.
This one’s from Amber’s page of “facts”
-If you look like your passport picture, you probably need the trip.
Today we volunteered at the Capital Area Food Bank! We helped them organize food into categories and then boxed it! It was really fun and a great experience!
It showed us that without the food bank some of the resources would not be available for families.
After volunteering some of us went to the National Air and Space Museum!>