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the daycare (alice)

July 2, 2011

i volunteered at the daycare for the first time tuesday. i went with marie on the microbus. it’s like a big van, and there were 21 people on it when i went. i stood, holding onto the seats near me. it was definitely an interesting experience… and would probably be very much against the law in minneapolis. after the microbus, we went in a small car with open sides, a mototaxi. the first time i used it, we were the only ones in there, but other people often go on with you (i’ve been in with 7). you yell to the driver where you want to go (the traffic is loud) and they take you there. pretty straightforward, and actually really fun, especially in the heat. the wind blows through the open sides, and it’s like have the air conditioning on high. it’s now one of my favorite things to do.
well, after the transportation, you walk down a dirt road for a short time until you see the building. the daycare part of the building is one small room with a long, low table that will seat 12 or 13 kids in the multicolored chairs. there is a locked store room connected to the building where they keep supplies, a cardboard box and a plastic bag with a couple stuffed animals, chew toys, some clay, markers, pencils, and crayons. All of the supplies are donations, as it doesn’t cost money to send your kid(s) there. the kitchen is a small building right next to the day care. the food is really good there, but simple. maize cereal with some meat and vegetables, tortilla, and rice. they are thinking of starting a garden so that the meals will have more fresh veggies. right outside the kitchen is a “black top”, a cement rectangle where the older kids play ball games. beside the black top is a 30 foot deep pool – looking thing with a fence around it that collects rain water they use for cooking and cleaning. i was really surprised when they told me the fence had just been put up. it’s right beside the daycare. behind this is a plastic outhouse with a plastic toilet. that’s the daycare!
when i arrived, there was a two year old girl already there, and the 2 workers were setting up. it is really hard to communicate with the workers because i hardly know any spanish. one of the workers there was especially good at explaining things to me though, so it wasn’t too much of a problem. that day two more kids, both babies, came. the number of kids vary. i guess people aren’t too crazy about the idea of daycares around here. they think children should always be with there family, however extended it is. it was really fun volunteering there though! i had a great time! at first i helped with the babies, keeping them from crying, but most of the time they wanted me to keep the two year old entertained. we drew and used the clay, and i tried to understand what she was saying – without success, but it’s easy to just smile and nod with little kids! i’m going to try and take some pictures next time i go and post them on the blog soon! hope whoever is reading this is well!

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  1. Alice, thanks for the entry. It sounds like you are having quite an adventure even just going to and from the daycare center. I was sorry to hear you were a little sick at first but I am assuming all is well now. Please take some photos so we can get an idea of what you are seeing. I loved Ruby’s photos. I am so excited that the 3 of you are there. Take care.

  2. Tara permalink

    Alice, so nice to hear from you! Glad to hear you are having some fun experiences! I hear you’ve made friends with the monkies! (we used to have one, I’ll tell you about it sometime)
    Can’t wait to see pictures!
    Love, Aunt Tara

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