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Women’s & Children’s Health Camp: Third day of camp in Chiapas, Mexico March 15th, 2017

Our morning started with a pleasant surprise due to our later wakeup call at 7:30 a.m., which allowed for the team to catch up on much needed rest. After breakfast, we gathered downstairs in the garden area of our hotel to put together school supplies for the children we would be visiting later in the day. We were to give the children pencil pouches that contained colored pencils, a variety of pens, a pencil sharpener and an eraser. The team formed two assembly lines out on the grass – one for the boys and the other for the girls supplies.

Since our arrival in Chiapas, the only weather encountered was rainy, cold, and overcast. Today, however, the day was beautiful with plenty of sunshine and a blue sky. We had quickly finished assembling the school supplies and had a little time before we were to deliver them. Due to the wonderful weather, the team took advantage of the day and enjoyed some quality time together in the courtyard garden. Our time spent there was filled with fun and laughter which put us in good spirits to head off to the school when it was time. Our ride to the school took us out past the city and up a mountain. With each tight curve on the unpaved road, we were slowly led into a rural area that was comprised of a lot of mountainous farm land growing squash, raising goats and truly free-range chickens.

We arrived at the school and once we were led inside, we were quickly greeted by children eagerly waiting for their teacher’s permission to allow them down to where we were. The team set up a table with the supplies and the children came down. Although they immediately waved and said hi, they were shy when it came to more conversation. They formed lines and we passed out their pencil bags. They were excited to receive them and many did not even want to put away their pouches for fear of misplacing or losing them. Afterwards, the team brought in cake and the kids were overjoyed and laughed and shouted with happiness. They then became more interactive. They were eager to talk, take pictures, laugh, and play with us. Their comfort with us then made it easy for us to take their uniform measurements. They were ecstatic to hear they would be receiving new uniforms and even more ecstatic to have us there. We found that they loved Snapchat filters and many of us allowed for them to play with the feature. They would go into fits of giggles every single time they looked into the camera and saw dog ears or glasses or a distorted face looking back at them. We enjoyed seeing them happy which made it so much more difficult when they came to us individually to say goodbye.

The team headed home tired after such a fun-filled day. After a nap, they headed out for lunch for traditional Mexican food, and once again visited the never-ending market from which we left with new and exciting goods for unbeatable prices. Although we will not be seeing the same children from today, we look forward to a new day of fun when we visit the precious kindergarteners next door tomorrow.

"Today was filled with a lot of contrast, like the contrast between our easy drive up the mountain and watching children walk miles up that same mountain in order to get an education. I realized today as I was watching the children's faces light up being measured for uniforms just for the prospect of new clothes that we take a lot of things for granted, and I'm so thankful for this opportunity." - Jasmine Chaij, Student Team Member | Humanity First - Texas Chapter

"My experience today has reminded me of how blessed and privileged I am and how unfair the world is; it has also taught me that my life is more meaningful by enabling others to live theirs. My experience with the kids at the school has been so positive and full of energy in so many ways I can't even describe. Although the children had nothing, they were the ones with the biggest smiles and loudest laughs and even though I came to Mexico to change lives, the children of San Cristobal has changed mine." - Neanna Yi, Student Team Member | Humanity First - Texas Chapter

"Today was an amazing opportunity to help the children in the school by providing supplies and getting them fitted for uniforms. It was so humbling seeing how excited they were to receive something as simple as pens or markers and having such a great attitude towards learning and interacting with us." - Aizah Rauf, Student Team Member | Humanity First - Texas Chapter

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