Today we were up a bit earlier than usual so we could travel up the mountains. We were going to visit the scholar, William, and have lunch at his house. When we arrived at the bottom of the hill we jumped in the back of pickup trucks to make the trek up the mountain. The road was dirt, rocky, and slim. It winded its way up the mountain. Although the climb was bumpy, the view was absolutely gorgeous.
On our way up the mountain we passed small houses made of concrete or wood. We also saw lots of farm animals just roaming about. People were walking up the mountain and horses were helping to carry things. It really painted a beautiful picture of rural Honduras. William’s place was similar to many that we passed. They had a horse in the yard, dogs and chickens roaming around, and a nice hammock in the shade of the house.
William’s dad took us for a hike where we were able to see his coffee plants. He had about one thousand plants, but many of them were attacked by a parasite. He also grows beans and plantains. Next we went back to the house to hangout and enjoy the view until lunchtime. When we got there we found a group of young boys waiting.
The boys were relatives and neighbors of William and his family. At first they were shy but we started kicking around a soccer ball with them and they opened up. They asked tons of questions and were so funny. They were amazed to hear that we owned our own cars, and also wanted to hear about our ride in the airplane. Rachel showed the boys pictures of her family and Katie showed them pictures of snow. They also had us teach them all sorts of English words. We sang, “Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes” for them and one of the boys responded that he thought it was absolutely beautiful. Later he sang a song in Spanish for us. The boys were dirty with holes in their clothes and shoes but they seemed really happy.
Next we had lunch. It was a soup that contained potatoes, hen, vegetables, and plantains. With it we had rice and homemade tortillas. William’s sisters grinded the corn for the tortillas and made the dough to flatten. Then they cooked it in a stove made out of clay and wood. Katie and Emily helped turn the crank to crush up the corn. This puts into perspective all the work it takes to make a meal. To end our time we had William blow out candles on his birthday cake.
After this busy day we headed back down the mountain and went back to OYE for a panel on Corporate Social Responsibility. 80% of us were sunburnt from our adventure. Thelma from KM2 Solutions was giving the presentation. KM2 Solutions is a call service that gets business from other countries outsourcing for customer service and sales. The reason the business is in San Pedro Sula is because there are many bilingual schools here and the accent is neutral and understandable for others that call.
KM2 chose OYE for their CSR out of 15 other organizations. They chose to donate their money and resources to OYE because they were impressed that the students gave the pitch and they were able to firsthand see the need of the students. They were also impressed at the skills and self-esteem students in OYE learn. Their new goals are to paint a 2nd mural with the students, participate in the Copa OYE soccer tournament, and join in capacity building workshops. They have been a prime contributor to the success the OYE. The main thing we learned about the presentation is that big corporations can help by reaching out to organizations in need.
Next we put the final touches on our projects. The campaign group finished the remaining recycling barrels. Then Katie wrote a song about recycling for the kids so we created choreography. Next we went shopping to get face paints for the children. While we were out and about we decided to have some fun and stopped to get coconut water. There was a stand with fresh coconuts. They cut holes in the coconuts and we were able to drink the water by putting a straw in it. It was a great reward for finishing our project.
The mural group worked really hard and finished the mural! Tomorrow they will be unveiling it for the students at the school. Many touch ups and second coats were added. Also they added the recycling sign and final details. It looks great and everyone is really excited about it!
Everyone was tired and sunburned from the day but Chelsea had a great surprise for us at dinner. She pulled out an envelope that contained notes from all of our parents! We can’t believe that the week is more than halfway done! The time has flown by!