While I arrived in the Dominican Republic late yesterday evening (Day 1), today was the first day that we were able to see first hand some of the good work being done in the Dominican Republic through World Vision. It has only been a day and I am already moved. Not because of the level of poverty but because of the level of hope…a hope that comes from receiving assistance that can change their lives and the lives of their families.

Kids on the goat project field

Here’s a recap of what we were able to experience today (which by the way, will in no way do it justice)

We visited the home of a single mother of seven children and heard her inspirational story

The Matos Family

* More on her story in a future post because there is so much that I want to share and I am still processing it all.

Visited the youth goat project

Kids working on the goat project field

Men in their community came up with this idea as a way to make money without having to leave their community since a lot of the young men typically leave to find jobs since they are scarce. A pastor at their church donated some land to get them started and then they started saving money and bought more land. They eventually went to World Vision and they gave them 16 goats and materials to build the fencing and feeding structure for the goats.

The Goat Project

They now have 50 goats and one day hope to have 500 goats so that they can sell goat cheese and yogurt for a profit. While they are not making a profit now, they are hopeful and they currently sell all of the male goats and keep the females for breeding.

goat project water area

Met and chatted with Dr. Jose Ramirez

Jose Ramirez Clinic

Jose Ramirez, a former World Vision sponsored child loves medicine and his community which is why he is doing what he can to build a local clinic while he studies to become a doctor. He became interested in medicine while volunteering with World Vision, an organization that allowed him to participate in birthday and Christmas celebrations, anti-bullying trainings and an abstinence program that taught him the importance of finishing school before starting a family. They even provided him with assistance on tuition and a motorbike so he could get too and from the university.

Through his efforts, the community is slowly building up their medicine stock pile.

Clinic supply

Did you notice the chairs they have to sit on?

Clinic chairs

They are also building sidewalks and he is trying to get government assistance to pave the roads. Not only would paved roads make the community look better, it also has health benefits…The dust affects their breathing and can cause skin irritations.  I think it is awesome that he is doing what he can to help those in is community.

Want to learn more or help by sponsoring a child through World Vision?

Leanette with girls from world vision trip

Together, we can fight poverty and help build sustainable communities where children can grow up healthy, strong, and protected! Visit: http://cause.worldvision.org/Leanette to find out more or to get started.