Thursday, December 25, 2014

El Salvador 2014

The week before Christmas my oldest two girls and I took an 8 day trip to El Salvador.  Our church has been taking a team every year for four years.  My oldest daughter has gone two other times, but it was my first time and middle girl's first time.  I can't really describe adequately how I feel after this trip.  I have so many emotions.  I really love the landscape and the weather but at the same time it is dirty and riddled with garbage.  The people we met were so warm and welcoming, but at the same time there is so much crime and poverty.  I guess I will do several posts and talk about what we did.  On Monday was mostly a travel day.  When we arrived in the San Salvador airport we had to wait to see if four of our boxes had arrived.  We each traveled with carry on luggage and then put all of our toys and supplies that we brought under the plane.  There were 24 of us and we took 27 boxes and 5 didn't make it there on the first day. 
This was outside of the airport.  We had to get through all of those people to get to our bus.

The first night we wrapped about 500 Christmas presents to take to some of the orphanages that we were going to visit and for a village Christmas party.

On Tuesday we visited an home for special needs adults.  These guys were a lot of fun. 

I felt pretty good about this home.  It was a little run down in parts but not too bad and the residents looked like they were well taken care of.  After lunch in town we went to an orphanage for children with AIDS.  We weren't able to take any pictures in there, but the children were sweet and seemed to enjoy us.  We had cake and a piñata. I didn't get to see inside of the home because we were outside, but it seemed ok as well.

On Wednesday we visited a home for special needs children.  Most of these children were severe and profound.  We danced with them and had cake and made balloon animals.  They seemed to enjoy us too. In here we weren't to take many pictures either so I won't post any.  The home used to be run by nuns so it was fairly nice.  In the afternoon we went to a boys orphanage for boys ages 12-17.  This place was pretty run down and used to be a prison.

These are pictures of the bathrooms and bedrooms.  They are pretty run down.  I met a boy there who liked to read and we gave him a Spanish bible.  He kept giving me hugs and seemed like he just needed some love.  I really enjoyed him and was sad when it was time to leave.

I will write tomorrow about building houses in the village and the fun we had at the Christmas party and at the beach. 

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