So I didn’t make it to Paris this past summer. However, I was abe to make it to Mexico, Canada, and New England. In short, over the past four months I hit every country on the North American continent including Baja Mexico, the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Montreal, and twenty-six American states. In addition, I was given the opportunity to work in an orphanage in Ensenada, Mexico, called the City of Children. The City is a nonprofit organization with no help from the Mexican government, and is completlely funded by sponsors and donations from normal, everyday people just like you and I. Each summer, groups get the opportunity to essentially live at the City for seven days. Throughout the week, groups spend time with the kids, do work projects to improve the City, and take food relief trips to some of the poorest citizens of Ensenada.
The city is literally just that, a city. It is an area of land enclosed by a 6 foot wall. 18 dorm parents, Mexican and American directors, and 99 children call the City home.
For the most part, soccer is what the kids do for fun and extracurricular activities. They play in the concrete courtyard in the front of the City. Money is extremely tight, and a few soccer balls are quite a bit cheaper than lessons and equipment in the arts department. It was for this very reason, a few months ago, a lady purchased a keyboard and donated it to the City. They keyboard had never been used for the simple fact that noone knew how to play it and there were no music teachers in the City. After the leader of our group discovered I’ve taught and majored in music, it was quickly decided that I would be a music teacher for Mexican orphans during the first week in June. Although an hour a day is not much, it was something, and hopefully opened the door for some of these kids.
Finally, the group I went with was also fortunate to have two doctors among our party, so in addition to the typical weekly activities, we were able to set up a small clinic. Since I help nurse at the clinic I work for, I was invited to tag along with the medical party. I can now say this from experience: the way that people look at you, hug you, and are so grateful for you and what you’re doing for them, it is something truly spectacular that words truly cannot express or describe. I am truly thankful for my time I was able to spend in Mexico.