We are wrapping up the second week in communities, and the volunteers have settled in so nicely! They have their own routines of waking up with the sounds of roosters and chickens, leading activities with children, and meeting with town officials to begin work on community initiatives.
Volunteers have integrated themselves into the communities to collaborate on youth-led projects like creating a panadería (bakery), beginning a recycling system, planting self-sustaining trees, among many more. They are making friends with the dance groups and some have even been on the community radio!
During this week, twenty-one communities participated in five Youth Encuentros, one for each Project Supervisor’s route! The Youth Encuentro brought together active youth and members of the communities to collaborate on ideas of youth participation, leadership and community projects. Each Supervisor held an individual Youth Encuentro with their four corresponding communities and had upwards of 40 people per Encuentro!
We were so excited to bring these youth together to join forces in realizing the potential of young people across Santa Elena. Encuentros consist of games and important discussions regarding becoming a leader. The volunteers are wonderful examples of leaders and have shown themselves to be the catalysts for positive change we knew they would be.
The future is looking bright here in Santa Elena, and we are anxious to see the outcomes of collaboration between communities and AMIGOS!