Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Making Connections

            If sharing toys is a hallmark of promising children, communication and the sharing of ideas is the mark of inspired adults.  In the spirit of sharing and cooperation, yours truly spent this past Monday afternoon with La Casa Victoria, a nonprofit dedicated to working with children in the old town neighborhood San Roque, in Quito.  The experience of volunteering with an Ecuadorian nonprofit that does similar work to what we do was worthwhile, and I learned new approaches and several interesting things about the organization Casa Victoria.
            Casa Victoria is an Ecuadorian organization with one location, a poor neighborhood in the south of Quito, dedicated to helping children and families grow through several programs that help kids in school, allow them to socialize in a safe environment, and provide religious instruction.  Their location is a beautiful, 120-year-old, recently-renovated house that functions as the living quarters of some of their volunteers and staff, the organization’s office, and the space where Casa Victoria’s programs take place.  On the day I worked with Casa Victoria, during their afternoon homework help program, they also received visitors from a team of high school students who came with prepared activities for the kids, as well as a youth leadership group from a church who came prepared with fun activities as well as a Bible study lesson plan.  In addition to several new linguistic tips for talking to elementary school-aged kids, I got new ideas for the timing of programs at our Centro, and for how to occasionally incorporate new programmatic activities. 
            We’re hopeful that with continued partnership (Manna PD Rachel is planning to volunteer at Casa Victoria soon, and someone from Casa Victoria will soon visit our library and work with us), both of our organizations will benefit by the spread of ideas and be inspired by what is happening at each place.

More information about Casa Victoria at http://www.casav.org/

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