The team of 103 volunteers from Connecticut that will be traveling to the Dominican Republic next week to serve the very poor is in for an unbelievable treat. Yes, each team member is leaving the comforts of home to help some of the poorest people in our hemisphere. All raised a significant amount of money to pay for their airfare, buses, food and lodging, etc. Many are taking precious vacation time to work, sweat, give up privacy, and sacrifice.
But this group will receive a gift from the children of Batey 50 that, as the MasterCard commercial states, is "priceless." How do the poorest of the poor "reward" this group of average Americans, hailing from the wealthiest state in the wealthiest county on the face of the earth?
For seven days, members of the Wallingford, Conn., DR Mission Team will travel over the dusty roads in the middle of miles and miles of sugar cane to reach Batey 50. About as far removed from the rest of the world as can be imagined, this sugar cane village of Haitian migrant workers and their families is a two-hour ride each way from the city of La Romana. The village has no electricity, no running water, no telephone, no Internet, no cell service. While there, the volunteers will be continuing "Fifty for 50," a project to rebuild all 50 shacks in the village into safe, sturdy, dry cinder block homes. A school is also underway -- more about that in future blogs.
Back to the "reward" for the U.S. volunteers. Click on the video below and for a moment enjoy the greeting from the children of Batey 50 when the old school bus of U.S. volunteers arrive in their village each day. Celebrate their joy, thank the Lord for these precious children, and appreciate their thankfulness that people do "care the least of these" and help their fellow man.
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