Last week, we were fortunate to vacation in the Dominican Republic with 8 of our friends.
I created a spreadsheet for things to pack, and I ended up having everything I needed. If anyone wants the list, I will gladly post it.
I wanted to take school supplies for the students in the area we were staying. I have read about bringing school supplies to the local kids. Some places are so poor once you get off the resort.
Our resort was Casa de Campo, in La Romana, which was beautiful. Beautiful, and very affluent. The home we stayed in had a full staff and chef. The staff lives above the kitchen. It was odd to have them do everything, and we wanted to just tell them to relax with us by the pool. We would definitely visit again. They had breakfast at 9 am for us every morning, and made a beautiful Dominican dinner one night. I can’t make breakfast for myself, much less ten people! I usually skip breakfast, due to time.
Before our trip, I purchased two books about the Dominican. One about the culture, and the other about places and things to visit. This helped a lot on the trip, and made things easier with understanding the culture. Men, don’t forget to bring long pants, collared shirts, and close-toed shoes if you want to eat in a restaurant.
I knew of a few charity organizations on the island, such as Dominican Dream. The only problem is that it wasn’t in our area, so I hoped for the best once we got there.
The property manager for the home was a Canadian named, Gordon, who lived on the island. Gordon and his wife have lived on the island for 15 years, so I asked him how I could make sure our gifts made it to the students. He smiled real big and said they volunteer for the two orphanages in the village, and the students would love the gifts. Gordon came back the last day to pick up the supplies, and said that he would make sure they are given to the students who would benefit the most. He spoke with me about how little the students had, and about sending things straight to the school from the United States.
We donated wide-ruled loose leaf paper, protractor and compass sets, pencil cases, masking tape and sharpies in different colors for the teachers, a pencil sharpener that mounts on the wall (old school!), #2 pencils, colored pencils, packs of dividers for notebooks, pink erasers, and folders with three holes punched and pockets on the inside.
If I had more room I would have packed the three ring binders and calculators.
When I donate items, I always get items that I would use. I know a lot of people get the cheapest stuff, but anyone who has colored with RoseArt crayons knows they are useless. Just because the kids need a little help doesn’t mean they don’t deserve quality items.