Monday, September 28, 2009
Does anybody read this stuff? Cutting deals and more.
Just curious. I know this blog works good for me because I'm able to write when it's convenient for me. But is it working for others? I guess I don't really need an answer to continue my pursuit of blogging. But let me know if you DO read it, please! Anyway, here goes...........
One of the projects this summer was to purchase the uniforms for the children, distribute the uniforms and photograph the children. I was able to do that in August with the help of our Dominican school director, Yaneth.
Yaneth knows everyone in the village by name. She is an incredibly dedicated woman with one child of her own, Luis Miguel. Yaneth is the daughter of Olivia the village's 68 year old Matriarch. At any time of the day you will see Olivia sitting in the shade under the big tree by her house surrounded by smiling playful children.
Olivia and a couple of her friends approached me for a cash donation so they could buy fabric to have an outfit made for church. They needed 1,500 pesos for the three of them. That's about $42 in US dollars. Now $42 would not break me, but the problem is WHO do you give the money to? EVERYONE asks for some pesos for one thing or another. The last thing I want to do is corrupt in some way the very people we are trying to help. So it's always a struggle to figure out how to help meet thier needs without turning it into a welfare state. So I told them I'd think about it and we'd talk later in the week.
The next day I was watching Olivia making a broom under her big shade tree. Carefully wrapping the vegetation around the broom handle that had been used over and over again. I wondered how many brooms I've throw into the garbage in my lifetime. I didn't have a clue, but I figured my number was quite a bit larger than Olivia's would be. We can learn a lesson about recycling from these people. Nothing is thrown away in the DR until it absolutely cannot be used again. Anyway, seeing her there working reminded I had work to do on the girls uniform skirts and got me thinking.
A group from my church sewed 33 skirts but didn't have time to insert elastic in the waistband - so I made a deal with Olivia and her lady friends. They could earn the pesos for their fabric by finishing the girls uniform skirts. So we all sat together under Olivia's big shade tree and worked hand in hand. And guess what?? I learned something else from these ladies. You insert the elastic, leave it long and tie the ends together. By untying the ends you can adjust the waiste later as the child grows. So simple. Okay so we may not be fashionistas with these waistbands, but they sure work great! Another lesson we can learn from these people.