Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Grateful Reflection

Before I came to Nicaragua I knew it was the second poorest country in Central America, but I don't think I had a grasp on what that really meant.

Before I came to Nicaragua I knew it was the second poorest country in Central America, but I don't think I had a grasp on what that really meant.

 In San Isidro, we were all welcomed into the homes of strangers. Knowing what I do now, I would classify my host family as upper middle class. However, this classification has a much different meaning in Nicaragua than in the United States. They have a fairly large house, but it is sparsely decorated. My host sister has school supplies to learn, but only owns five colored pencils to draw with. They have enough food to eat for every meal, but it may not be balanced with all of the food groups. It is a different way of living, but my family welcomed me into their home without hesitation.

Last weekend, we visited a small community in the mountains near El Sauce. It was easily one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited. It was also the most impoverish community I have ever seen. These people farm coffee beans as part of a cooperative for a living. Throughout their last few growing seasons they have endured hardships due to drought and plague, but they continue to work hard everyday to support their family. It was a level of poverty I have never witnessed. Despite having next to nothing, these people took pride in sharing their lifestyle and culture with complete strangers.

 It's hard to accept so much from these people who have so much less than I do. The families that I have had the pleasure of staying with have welcomed me into their homes with open arms and kind hearts. It has been humbling to live alongside such strong, generous people for the past 16 days. I am truly grateful for the experiences this trip has brought into my life, and I am inspired by the technological opportunities that can improve the quality of life here in Nicaragua.

Blog entry by Kalie Manke


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