Last spring it felt like I had all sorts of opportunities to serve in very direct, tangible ways. It felt like I had plenty of time to teach, grade, still have free time to go volunteer somewhere.
This spring I have not had any free time, so when the school's service project coordinator asked for volunteers to supervise our students while they put on Easter events for some orphans, I jumped at the chance.
Quisqueya makes service hours mandatory for promotion to the next grade, but I have not been lucky enough to work with the students when earning those hours. That changed a week ago Sunday.
Quisqueya students joined kids from other private schools in Haiti to volunteer, and the students ran all of the booths. What booths? These booths.
Face painting... a traditional Easter ritual. Everyone knows the story of the Easter snake right? No? Yeah, me either. The orphans could ask for whatever they wanted to be painted on them and as long as our students knew how to do it, they would oblige. I am guessing that to the boys a snake was cooler than a flower.
The orphanage kids then went on to play a bat and ball game with the students. The bats looked like carrots... Yay! Easter! Spring! Baseball!
After the face painting of the undead, and the let's-turn-anything-into-a-soccer-game, there was egg dying. This was awesome. There is a scientific ratio for orphan to adults/students when dying eggs. That ration is 2:1. Two adults or students for every one orphan. Anything less is chaos, pandemonium, and will result in glitter-infused pastel dye being thrown around. Once the right ratio was reached, some awesome creations were made.
It was touching to see the students interacting and bonding with the orphans, especially the more macho or sometimes aloof students- they were the ones jumping right in and painting faces, dying eggs, playing soccer.