For the first time, Across the Globe ministries sent down an education team this summer from June 25-July 2. After their visit in February, we were delighted to see another team from their church by June. The team contained several kids and teenagers, many of whom were childhood friends, making this team seem more like a big extended family rather than members of a large congregation. After travel on Saturday and some practice and unpacking on Sunday, we had our first school visit on Monday in Toncontin. An unexpected surprise for this week was the realization that school was out! The area had missed an earlier vacation and to compensate, they decided to take a week off of school right when our education team arrived. After making some desperate calls to school teachers in the area, though, we arranged for one school a day to meet us at their village school with the promise of games and prizes for every student present. This deal made us realize the years of relationship poured into the teachers which allowed us to make that request of them during their vacation week. The week continued as we visited Rio Viejo, then Yaruca, ending with a hike out to El Paraiso. Rio Viejo included more than just a school visit, but also a little painting project to help out the chipping paint and rusted iron at the elementary school.
This team proudly holds the title “Best Puppeteers” due to their enthusiasm and sore shoulder muscles! Even with young kids and teens manning the puppets for the first time, the show was brilliant and the school kids were captivated. In the end, we visited 408 students and 28 teachers. Gifts were spread all around and love was showered abundantly on everyone present. We hope this team comes back with some strong shoulder muscles because the kids would love to see an encore!