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Intibucá, Honduras 2011: Project Update #1

 

Volunteers arrived in Intibucá on June 21st excited to begin their AMIGOS adventure!  For three days Volunteers participated in briefing in La Esperanza, the capital city of the department of Intibucá.  During this time, Volunteers had the opportunity to get to know each other, sample typical Honduran foods (including the basic typical plate of beans, rice, eggs, cheese and corn tortillas), and continue their in-country training.  AMIGOS staff trained Volunteers on lesson planning, community organizing around the community-based initiative, health and safety, and working with Honduran youth.  Volunteers had the opportunity to meet representatives from PLAN Honduras and Save the Children Honduras, our partner agencies based in Honduras, who will visit their communities throughout the summer.  During the last day of training, youth counterparts joined us from each community, and Volunteers had the opportunity to get to know them.  Volunteers and youth counterparts made introductions, played games, and continued training – with more specifics on their communities. AMIGOS staff is very impressed with the Volunteer’s Spanish, preparation for the summer, overall excitement, and willingness to try new things.  They are a wonderful bunch of young adults!

Intibucá is a beautiful, mountainous department of Honduras. For the next few weeks, Honduras will be experiencing the rainy season and thus the temperature is very moderate – not too hot or cold.  Every day there are wispy clouds on the mountains and in many of our communities Volunteers are experiencing a true cloud forest!  Almost all of the communities are very rural and Volunteers will be learning about local harvesting, livestock, and other methods for sustaining Honduran’s livelihoods, while they are not working on their projects.  We expect that they will all learn how to make perfect corn tortillas by midterm!

This week is the Volunteer’s first week in community.  They will get to know their host families and youth counterparts even more, as well as other community members through local activities, community meetings, and their rotating meal plan.  Many of them will have the opportunity to eat in the houses of most community members throughout the summer.  This week, Volunteers (with their youth counterparts) will work on community mapping, which is a way to assess the resources within the community as well as find their way around.  Volunteers and youth counterparts will also work on proposals for the community-based projects that will be turned in to their supervisors next week.  We have already heard that communities are planning to fix soccer fields, build playgrounds, form youth groups, rebuild school roofs, and many other ideas!  Volunteers are also beginning to plan resource-raising activities in each community, including selling typical food and cultural events.  All of their work so far is very exciting!

Check out our blog for photos and more!

Amigos de las Américas (AMIGOS) hosts programs for young adults to volunteer abroad. AMIGOS’ volunteer opportunities focus on youth leadership training and community development in Latin America.

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