On Tuesday we presented a donation of three soccer balls, plus a pump, to the children and teachers at Casa Nazareth, the orphanage where we are volunteering. The balls were provided by the Global Futbol Initiative, whose work I described in an earlier post. The boys weredelighted to receive the balls, which we delivered along with two computers donated by ourproject. All of these materials will be used by our students in their teaching and activities with the kids at the home.
Another group of students is working with a group of women in the barrio of Alto Cochabamba, where they are helping to organize a club de madres while working alongside the women as they learn to bake different kinds of breads and pastries. The idea is to offer women training in this skill, which they can then use to increase their income, while also gathering with other women to form bonds of community. Most of the residents of Alto Cochabamba are ambulantes, street vendors who work in the Cancha and other markets around the city and the valley region. While they do this work the students also do ethnographic research with the women, learning about their lives and community through mapping exercises, charting kin relations, observation and interviewing. This combination of research and service-learning is the hallmark of our program.