On Wednesday we did something a little bit different, we went to Batey Palavé! We arrived and did some ice breaker activities with our students and the community members, then split up into 5 different groups. We learned more about the history and realities of this Batey community through a brief tour led by leaders of the community. Batey Palavé originally was established as a community for male Haitian migrant workers in the sugar cane industry. Over time, women arrived and the community developed into the community it is today, a mix of Dominicans and Haitians. After the tour we played different sports with the community and did arts and crafts with the little ones. After lunch we had a blast dancing, and I was thrilled by this extraordinary cultural exchange: after dancing some bachata, merengue and reggeatón, our students played the songs from Don Bosco and taught the members of the Palavé community the dances they learned at our service site. It was amazing!
Listen to Sarah's impressions of our day at Palave:
"The time we spent touring the Haitian community and playing with the kids and leaders was wonderful and different from Cristo Rey. At the Batey, we walked around the neighborhood and the kids and the people looked cheerful and full of energy, and our tour guides greeted and knew everybody we passed by. Dancing with them was also fun and they made me feel like I belonged, like it was home for me as well."
Thanks for your input, Sarah!
Ellie playing baseball
Sophie P helps the kids with a puzzle
Willoughby at the arts and crafts table
Lindsey and Annie at the jumprope station
Hayley, Calista and Alayna at the drawing/coloring table
On the tour of the community--this is a beautiful mural at the pre-k through 6th grade school
Gennie sets up her teammates in volleyball
Nicole showing off her dance moves :)
We wrapped up Wednesday with a stop at the Mercado Modelo for last minute souvenir shopping. Stay tuned for another blog post about our service site wrap/up coming soon!