This blog post was guest written by Habitat Wake volunteer, Laura Ogle.
Today was our first official “work” day and what better way to start it off than with a group reflection to share with one another why we’ve all come together in this beautiful country to help make a difference.
After an hour long bus journey with views ranging from the city high rise buildings to the city’s high rising slums, what an honor to have our team orientation at the National office with none ofter than Ana Cutts, the National Director.
While learning about the history and culture of Argentina as well the projects, the impact and the overall view of Habitat Argentina, our team got to experience and share the National drink “Mate”. Mate is not just about sipping a drink from a straw. It’s about being social, having conversations and spending quality time with one another.
After the very informative orientation we were on our way to the much anticipated destination of Los Ceibos to meet Juan & Yesica, the family whom we are helping to build a home, a new life and a dream for.
Upon arrival, we were greeted with smiling faces and homemade lunches from a local woman who has been feeding the volunteers for several months now. I must say, it was one of the most delicious meals I’ve had since my arrival in Argentina!
Duties for the day included making cement and laying brick, to carrying buckets of dirt to form the floor foundation, to cutting and bending rebar for the concrete foundation columns. All the while we were kept company by the local dogs, horses and hogs that wandered amongst us throughout the day. The young children living nextdoor played outside and curiously peeked through the gates at us but wouldn’t communicate. We’ve brought soccer balls and coloring books to play with them when they’re ready to meet us!
After a productive work day with our new Habitat family, we headed back to our hotel with much to talk about from the day. A lovely group dinner at a local restaurant that offered a variety of Argentine specialities such as tender beef, rich red wine and flan, for those with a sweet tooth, ended a most wonderful first work day filled with history, new relationships, teamwork and fellowship.