Hi everyone, it’s time to update how I’m doing now with my internship. Last week was our Spring break, so instead of laying on the beach and getting tan, I decided to go with our Alternative Spring Break group to the Dominican Republic. Therefore I wasn’t be able to work for the Red Cross. Before I went on this trip, everything was out of the blue. I didn’t know what to expect, what we would do, what kind of place we would be staying at, and most importantly whether we could make a positive impact on those children at the orphanage. Now I can say; this was a trip of a lifetime. So this week’s topic will be a little bit different from what this blog is about, but it should be fun to share my experience with you guys for a little bit as well. So hope you like it~~~ <3
During this trip, every day we went to a local school called Distrito municipal Cruce De Gustscanes. In the morning we were teaching 7th grade children, in the afternoon class, we were teaching 4th graders, and later on we would come back to the orphanage and stay with the orphanage children. Since there was no internet and any electronic accessories, we used the most basic way to communicate with one another and that made me notice how much things we have be missing in our lives. Today people seem so busy with their jobs, problems, relationships etc. and they forget the one most important thing, and that is to communicate love. I was really nervous when I went to school to teach for the first day, I was really worried that the children might not understand me since I don’t really speak any Spanish. However I was totally wrong about that, non-verbal communications such as body language really made them understand me well.
Because English is my second language as well, it really helped to communicate and teach these children ESL a little bit easier. We would sing songs together, play games together, draw pictures and so on. I was very proud all of my students by seeing how many words they have learned in a short period of time and I was very surprise how much impact we had on those students and how close of the relationship was built between me and those kids. I was so happy when I saw a couple of our morning class children standing in front of the school gate waiting for us, and when they saw me getting off the bus they were screaming our names. I was very surprised by their appearance since they suppose to go to school just 4 hours in the morning. I asked them why they were there, and they told me they knew we would be leaving on Friday, so they wanted to be with me as long as they could. Right then, I lost my voice.
Saying goodbye to those kids was much harder than I could possibly think of. In the afternoon, most of the kids came by again to say goodbye. After hugging all of them again and again, we finally got on the bus. Suddenly, all of these kids ran over and to hold our hands, screaming our names and someone asked me “Chow Chow, back, December!” I told them I will definitely try to come back as soon as possible to visit them. As the bus started moving, the kids started running and crying until the bus speed up a little more. Our group leaders told us not to show your emotion because that would make those kids more upset, so I used all my strength to hide my feelings until the kids couldn’t see the bus anymore.
I felt this trip really made me a better person and to see things differently in life. It’s a life changing experience to see that those kids, who have practically nothing, are some of the happiest people I have around me. After thinking and talking to all the people on the trip, I know for sure that whatever job I am doing in the future, I want to serve and make a good difference for other people’s lives. This week made me realize how much joy it will bring you when you are doing something to serve people. The reason I did not use “help” after this trip was because I notice if we say we want to help those kids, that would mean they are all helpless, but they are not. We are there because we want to simply bringing them more joy and add color to their everyday lives.
One of the interns of the program once said, “When I left this place, I felt that I was leaving my home, because that is what you build while you are there. A home in which you are with amazing people (such as this 250 group) at all times, and a home that is filled with love coming in the form of a small boy smiling at you when you look at him.” And that was exactly how I felt about my experience.
After this trip, I cannot think about doing something else in life other than to serve people, to use my ability to help people and make their lives better. For those who is reading my blog now, I want to tell you guys that life is short, so live in it without regret! If you have a chance to do something cool like this, take it! You will notice how much joy you will get and how much you can learn from your experience.
Everyday my teammates and I are saying how much we miss those kids. I really hope this red cross trip will end up working for us, because this will be a great knowledge exchange for both chapter and I am sure one day it will benefit the people from both countries as well.
May God bless America and China. Stay tuned.
Word of the day: 服务（Fu Wu）. This means Serve in China!