(get ready for a major picture overload)
I can't believe that my week in Mexico is already over! Time flies when you are having fun.
This is a week that I will definitely never forget. It's safe to say that my experiences have had a positive affect on my life. And while, yes, we were doing humanitarian service we definitely would give a little and then get a little...
okay get a lot.
As you can tell from the beautiful resort that we stayed at. ^ Our condos were amazing, but it was kinda funny. It was like they were their own oasis. We drove through this flat, ugly, dry, desert and out of no where, and in the middle of no where stood our huge condos with pools and a breathtaking beach!
So how did I find myself with a group of gymnastic coaches in Puerto Penasco? My best friend, Madi use to work for Lil Flippers gymnastics before she left on her LDS mission. As a staff they have gone on this trip every year for the past 5 years, and she use to join them with her twin, my best friend Kenzie. I was able to take Madi's place this year, and I will forever be grateful for the opportunity that I had to do so.
Flippers Gymnastics cooperates with a man from Mexico named Alberto. Alberto doesn't have a job, instead he spends time looking for donations, sponsors, and any type of funding so he can provide meals for the local schools, and assist with other needs that the children have. He feeds his family with the bare minimum and the rest goes to his ongoing service. He was an amazing man! And was a much needed translator as we communicated with the locals. (I have developed a new found ambition to learn spanish by the way! Rosetta Stone is calling my name.)
For the majority of the kids, the one meal that they receive at school is the ONLY meal that they are able to get that day. A spoonful of rice and beans means a lot more than you would think it could to these kids.
One of the main issues with getting the kids to school is the fact that in order to go to school, you are required to have shoes. (Just like you do for any public school.) But so many of these kids cannot afford new pairs of shoes.
(no shoes = no school = no meal)
Keeping these children in school is so important for their futures! Just like anywhere a focus on school derives attention from negative behaviors like teen pregnancies, drug abuse, and gang involvement. And trust me, after you meet these sweet little spirits it would break your heart to think of any of them falling into those situations. The little spanish children truly are so beautiful and soo humble and sweet. Even though there was a language barrier, it's true that love is the same in every language. And that was all these kids expressed to us! Without even knowing who we were they instantly wanted to hold our hand, give us hugs, and just be with us. The excitement and gratitude that they expressed from getting a pair of shoes (from the donations that we brought) is priceless. A great lesson needs to be learned from their simple bliss.