This morning started off differently than usual, with a tour of the Hospitalito in Ciudad Sandino. We saw the maternity ward, emergency room, and various other parts of the very busy hospital. The whole group felt a little uncomfortable at times, walking as a large group past patients who often stared, but we were reassured that tours happen there all the time. From the Hospitalito, we went to the Ciudad Sandino market. We were tasked with buying the most nutritious food possible with just 200 cordobas. Some groups did better than others, but we were able to practice our Spanish and immerse ourselves in the local culture. Sugar, oil, beans, and rice were the staples of our mission, but some groups were able to buy things like avocados and mangoes. We were informed that the food we bought was to be donated to families in Nueva Vida, so our class activity was for a good cause.
The afternoon was filled with loud cinderblock machines and lots of shoveling. Most of the group stayed at the JHC industrial park to continue making cinderblocks for the new clinic building. Three people drove in the back of Rojelio’s truck to pick up a load of commercially made cinderblocks, and then unloaded them, with the help of a local girl, at the Nueva Vida clinic. These blocks are thicker and stronger than the ones we can make ourselves, so they will be used for the X ray room in the new clinic. Four people went to the clinic to work in the pharmacy and shadow the doctor, but there was not much work to be done, so they returned to the industrial park to help with the cinderblock production. Everyone was excited to see that dinner was Mac and cheese, Caesar salad, and brownies to round off a hard day of work. Tomorrow we leave for Selva Negra, and everyone is super excited to get away to a relaxing weekend.
~ Mikaela Thomas & Lynzi Wilson