Saturday, March 16, 2019

Beach Day, Fun Day

Today was a great day.  We were able to take kids from a teen boys orphanage to a beach house to swim and play.  It was a lot of fun throwing footballs and playing soccer on the beach.  I played frisbee in the pool for a whole hour.  After a few games and a lot of fun, we ate some really good, fried chicken.  After eating, we danced to alot of songs with the boys.  My favorite song to dance to the cupid shuffle.  At the end of the day, we made a tunnel with our arms for the boys to run under when they were leaving.  This was the best day so far.  

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

All good things...

The team had a fun filled last day, visiting with the special needs adults at San Martin.  From dance parties to face painting, nail art and lots of coloring, it was a wonderful way to end a wonderful week!

Sunday, March 10, 2019

You get a house! And You get a house!

Hi my name is Megan and today our team finished the two houses we were building. It was an extremely touching day and it was a feeling that I had never felt before. Our groups switched houses so that we could meet the other family. We painted the houses and decorated the insides. It was great to be able to have time with each family and really get to know both of them. I was able to hand the keys over to one of the families and it was a truly great feeling that I know is a once in a lifetime experience. I hope that I get to experience this feeling again.
-Megan Davis

Today was one of the most rewarding days so far. We finished both houses by painting them, assembling the roof, and decorating the inside. Along the way I met many ninos that helped paint and loved learning how to be a “gringo.” When we were able to dedicate the house and show the families the house, their faces and smiles made me realize the amazing work God enabled me to do. God placed me here today to change multiple lives and help kids who need it most. So even though it was hard and I even almost fell (thanks Hal Ford for catching me), the smiles, laughs, and joy I witnessed today were amazing! After dedicating the house, we were able to pass out eye glasses, t-shirts, hats, dresses, toys, and candy to all the kids and families. We also played games with the kids and taught them many new games. I loved learning new Spanish words and having fun with the kids. The work we put in today produced many smiling faces, 
and that’s all worth it to me.
-Kate Rogers

Today, we finished two houses in Ahuachap├ín. We split up into two groups to finish the roofs, windows, and paint and furnish the house. In the afternoon, we prayed over the families and blessed their new homes. It was a great day and many people got emotional when we handed over the keys. After the houses were dedicated, we made donations to the community. We donated dresses, candy canes, eyeglasses and other clothing. It was a special moment for both the community and our group as our hard work was fulfilled through the joy of the families. A tiring, long day was met with a big meal at, El Salvador chain, Pollo Campero. Maybe it was the hunger that filled everyone after a hard day of work, but it is fair to say that the chicken schmacked. Some of the group stayed out late 
to feed the homeless after the rest prepared the meals. 
- Andrew Katz

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Back to School & Building Houses

Today our group went to a school in El Salvador. At this school I met a boy named Melvin. Melvin and I became best friends in the short time we had together. We played games, danced, and watch the puppet show the translators performed. After the show, Melvin and I played soccer and threw a football together. We even made up a handshake. While it was sad to see him leave, I knew we had made him happy today. This is definitely a moment in my life I will never forget!
-Jackson Brannon

  Hola, soy Kirsten! I’m so happy to be part of this trip, it’s such an amazing experience already. I’m so grateful to be able to be here and help the less fortunate. Today’s events have impacted me in ways I wouldn’t have ever imagined. When we went to the school today, I saw the children’s happy faces and it made me feel so special. It was incredible giving them the most simple things, such as beans and rice, that make them ecstatic.  When we arrived to the location today where we would build the houses, we were introduced to the families we were building them for. While they were talking to us you could see how grateful they were in their faces. It was amazing to me to see how this thing we are doing for them can make them so emotional and blessed. I am so thankful to be on this trip and to be able to build a house for these families.

-Kirsten Jones

 Hola, me llama Jasmine. Today (Friday) we got to go to an elementary school. We played with them, painted faces, made shakers, had shaved ice and popcorn, and we had a puppet show. I loved spending time with the kids because they were so friendly. Even though we don’t speak the same language we had great interpreters and still a had fantastic time getting to know the kids. After we left the school, we went to the location where we were building the houses. We were introduced to the 2 families we are building the houses for. I introduced our school and students to them and explained why we came. After that I talk to Ana, who is the mom of one of the families we are building a house for. She was so so kind and happy. She said she was so happy we were here and said that she could finally sleep in peace because her son, Nelson, who is wheelchair bound, will be comfortable in the house we are building which will have a ramp for him. I feel like her and I have this great connection that her and I both felt, and I will never forget. I am so happy and grateful that I get to build a house for her and her family and can bring them peace. 
-Jasmine Meadows

Friday, March 8, 2019

Paducah Tilghman High School visits El Salvador

Our first day began at 3:30 am. We met in the hotel lobby eager to start our adventure. The first flight we took was from Nashville to Atlanta, our flight was late leaving so when we landed we had 10 minutes between the time we got off the plane and when we were supposed to be on the next plane to El Salvador. We sprinted to our gate and luckily the flight was delayed or we wouldn’t have made it. When we arrived in El Salvador we went to “States Diner” a restaurant owned by Sus Hijos. We ate there then went to the mission house. 
At the mission house we began to make food to feed to the homeless that night. We made sandwiches with mayonnaise, cheese, and bologna. The homeless people would also receive an apple, a shirt, and other treats. We packed bags full of food until we could fill 3 full garbage bags up with the food. From there we hopped in the back of a pickup and were driven around the town. 

To see the vast amount of homeless people living on the streets is a huge eye opener. It puts life into perspective and let’s you know how truly lucky we have it to be born in America. We would give each person a bag with the sandwiches and other items. Each time we handed someone a bag we made sure to say “dios te bendiga,” or God bless you. The people’s faces would light up with joy each time they received the bag and the blessing. It was an amazing experience that is truly humbling and allowed us to to see how unfortunate people here are, but how we can also help them through acts of kindness. - Quinn Atnip