We’ve been in beautiful Puerto Rico for a little over a month now; and we have a little over a month remaining until we return…weird. Honestly, I don’t know what I expected for this summer, but not what this has been. Don’t get me wrong, Puerto Rico has been so great and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else right now.
yep, that’s what Luquillo looks like from our roof
oh yeah, we also live near El Yunque, the only tropical rainforest in North America
The first two weeks we were here, Natalia, Taylor, Tyler and I were busy cleaning and prepping our house for the groups. After being shut-up for nine months or so, this house needed plenty of TLC; but, by the time the first group arrived, we had scrubbed, killed mice, roach bombed and learned many of the quirks of a Puerto Rican house.
Our weeks look similar; the biggest change is in the groups that are here serving with us. Groups come here on Sunday and stay until Friday morning. Monday through Thursday, from about 9-3 they are basically doing a day camp for Puerto Rican kids in a barillo (or government project).
Half of the camp is Adventure Camp, led by Natalia, which is similar to VBS; it includes songs, crafts, games, a skit, a memory verse and more. Taylor runs the other half, Sports Camp; which is either basketball, flag football or soccer. We have learned though, the kids here are not interested in running drills and sticking to one sport, so variety has been added to this portion of the program.
volunteers last week playing perro, perro, gato (our version of duck, duck, goose)
The kids here need love. It has been awesome to see the groups come in and connect with the kids. Even though there might be a language barrier with many of the people we are working with, it all works out; God is doing amazing things here and bringing people together at the right times.
one of our volunteers loving on a little boy
Another part of our day is lunch time. The government provides free lunches for the kids. We are so thankful to have these lunches for the kids we are working with. For some, it might be the only meal they get that day.
lunch at Yuquiyu II during our second week there
But that’s not all we do. We also do a service project, spend more time in the community and have time here together in fellowship and worshipping. It has been really great getting to know a variety of people and having conversations about life, dreams, the weather, you know, whatever is going on.
our first group writing on their paper sheet during Big Group
I am truly thankful for the opportunity to be down here this summer. We may lead a really busy life, but my Natalia, Taylor and Tyler are great to be with and the ever-changing groups keep things interesting.