Yesterday evening, we had a cooking class for all the students! We made "Los llapingachos". This is a typical plate of the mountain region in Ecuador. It is potato tortillas (cheese and potatoes fried like a pancake) with chorizo sausage, fried egg and a peanut sauce.
After cooking class, we all decided to go out to the main plaza. Wednesday is "Ladies Night" in the city, especially for the tourist women. They play all sorts of American music and a lot of places don't let men in until way later in the night! It's a fun way to be emerged in the culture and have a change of scenery! Here are some pictures from the fun night we had out and about together! The night life in Ecuador is very popular and it is a great opportunity to meet people from all around the world. Last night, we talked with people from Ecuador, London, Germany, Australia, Spain, Columbia and the United States!
After a fun night, it was back to Abuelitos de Calle this morning! I took some more picture to share. I am so grateful for those of you already making donations and being so ready and willing to support the cause in any way possible!
Today, we played Bingo! Here are some of the Abuelitos loving to play (and loving to take pictures! Every time I pull out my camera, all of the Abuelitos call me over to take pictures of them!). After Bingo we did some more puzzles!
Thursday and Friday are the busiest days at Abuelito de La Calle. The crowd is largest right before lunch, and there is busy and crazy lunch prep happening for over 100!
We always try to have healthy lunches! Many times, supermarkets will bring their old fruits or vegetables to us and we will then have to cut around the bad parts and serve what we can! The staff in the kitchen works all day tirelessly to make sure that the Abuelitos can eat! For some, it is their only meal of the day!
It was another great day volunteering and I am more than excited to continue to serve and help with the Abuelitos de La Calle.
After volunteering, I came home and caught up on some work that I had to do (including buying books for fall semester!). While I was working, I received a call that I needed to go to Simon Bolivar (my school) right away. They would not tell me anything on the phone except that I needed to come to the school right away! I jumped up and made the usual fifteen minute trip to school in only ten minutes!
When I walked in, the room was filled with smiles and I was told to sit down. I was then handed a diploma that read: "Diploma for the Best Volunteer in July- Danielle Slowik- She has been an excellent volunteer for the hard work she has done in 'Abuelitos de La Calle'. This is an acknowledgement for being on time and attending every day. Danielle has shown enthusiasm and interest in the people she worked with." I was also given a lovely blue necklace as a gift for receiving Volunteer of the Month!
I am so honored and blessed to have received this award! I am so happy that Spirit Cultural Exchange program gave me this wonderful opportunity and I am beyond blessed that Abuelitos de La Calle has opened it's doors for me to help and share my time with them! Thank you to Simon Bolivar School for planning and organizing so much during my trip and thank you for taking the time to recognize your volunteers!
Stay tuned for more Ecuadorian adventures and if you haven't yet, look at the blog post entitled, "How Can You Help?" and find a way to do your part to contribute to persons in Ecuador with a huge need. Challenge yourself or your community to make a world wide impact!
Love & Care,