Wow! What a day. We started out this morning with an early breakfast at 7:15. It was pretty amazing; tortillas, beans, eggs with ham, and pancakes. That was the easiest part of the entire day.
Immediately after our morning time we went to work. It started with making 45 lunches for kids in the community from our VBS site, loading the vans with water, tools and students. The drive isn't too bad, maybe 25 minutes.
There were so many cool moments that took place today, that it will be hard to just share a couple.
The first was the VBS site. Our students who were running the site were defintely nervous about how it was really going to actually work. But then something awesome happened, we showed up. The students literally got out of the vans and 2 kids came up to them, almost as if they knew what we were here for. They brought puppies, which seemed to instantly break the language barrier, and our students started using their high school Spanish to communicate. Within minutes, we already have 4 kids who just followed our small VBS team around. After 20 minutes of setting up shade canopies, our puppet show theater, and some crafts, we were up to 20 kids. Then once we started singing, playing games and really running this site that we up to 45 kids! We gave out all our lunches and are planning on making 100 sandwiches tomorrow, now that the word is out
Then some really cool stuff happened. We had really wanted to partner with a local church, and suddenly Pastor Ramon showed up who just happens to be opening a church a couple of blocks away, and he called his Sunday school teacher who came down to help.
Here are a couple of pictures of the VBS site.
The other cool moments took place on the construction sites. Site 1 started off with some big hurdles that ended up lasting all day. The team we partner with to build houses, Baja Christian Ministries, specifically targeted this area to build houses because of a recent fire in the area that burned down 36 houses. This week being Spring Break, there are 13 other houses that are being built all around us. But as a result we couldn't find all the wood we needed on site 1, partly because it had been taken inside by the home owners for protection from theft, it made for a slower day. But they did have huge progress and preservered to get the entire house framed. It was great to see how they as a team overcame the obstacles and got so much done.
Site 2 had a great day! First all their wood was right next to the concrete slab. Secondly the homeowners, which are a 26 year old mom with 4 kids and a dad, are home and they are all actively engaged in helping our students. The dad used to be a painter and helped paint all the pieces and the mom and kids participated too. They have really been great as a team too and continue to amaze me with their leadership and team bonding.
Here are some pictures of both site 1 and 2. The last 2 pictures are of the houses when we left.