Follow our 7e adventures with YAC in the Dominican Republic from June 3-June 12th! See their travels and activities as they learn about Human Security and Dominican Culture with our 7e Team! 

YAC – Custom Group in the Dominican Republic 

June 3-12, 2019! 

Day 3 – June 5

We started the day with a sunrise run on the beach where we all got exercise and some beautiful pictures. Afterwards we relaxed around the lodge and played card games. For the main trip of the day we traveled to the school in Las Canas where we played basketball, soccer, and volleyball. The school gave us a tour and showed us a dance they were preformed a dance they were doing for their upcoming graduation. After a long hot day of hanging out with the kids we left to return to Indallo to rest before the rest of our day. We went to the local health clinic to see how different it was from back in the U.S. The clinic was very small and was incorporated into a house with only three rooms. When we returned to the lodge we played uno with the supervisors and they loved it, especially lubens. We then got a lecture about the meaning of 7e from the founder and CEO, Also a small prank war broke out after so it was fun to just have a goof off time with everyone here.

-Triton and Cole (The Boys)

Day 4 – June 6th

Today we, the YAC students, travelled to the Dominican community Cano Dulce. In Cano Dulce we hosted a medical brigade where we provided treatment from a doctor including; check-ups, vitals, and distributing medicines. While working in this community we were able to absorb their culture and it helped us to better understand the health care system in a rural Dominican community. Medicines are not easily accessible to all the community members in Cano Dulce, this brigade benefitted the community by providing them with resources they did not have. After the brigade we were able to tour a local man’s bee farm, which was very interesting and very different from the way American farmers harvest honey. He spoke about the changing climate and how the seasons and weather have been affecting his bees and his honey harvest. Environmental health is extremely important to this community, and many others across the Dominican, because their health and every day lives depend on it. 

All in in all this day was amazing!

Isabelle & Brody

Day 4 

We did reforestation and vitamin distribution. In Cano Dulce we watered the banana trees by getting water from everywhere in the community. We also dug holes and planted about 75 more trees for the community which would help their economic and health security. A few things we learned doing this which was that the DR is in a huge drought right now since holes were dug into the creek to access water for the houses. We also ran out of water as we went through our day which really opened our eyes. In the afternoon we went to Polanco to hand out vitamins where we saw lots of families in need of certain vitamins due to their diets. To end our day with a “surprise” Walner and Kate bought us all ice cream to end a hard day which we really appreciated. 🙂

Taylor and Kayla

Day 5

We produced a medical brigade and went to the beach. In New York, we produced a medical brigade serving over thirty persons. Of those people, we helped get five pregnant women medicine, treated colds, and relieved people with chronic pain. The highlight of the brigade was playing with the local children and also getting them the medicine that they needed to continue with their daily activities. After the brigade, we went to the beach. This was one of the prettiest and mememobal beaches we have ever been too. There was carved heads of marble placed all over the side of the rocks, and well and a marble man carved into the side of the island.

This experience made us as a whole refflect on the time we have been here and made us grateful for the moment we have had. Coming to the Dominican Republic made us realize that not only are we lucky to be born where we were, but made us grateful for the care we receive medically.  This is something we believe as Americans we look over, not realizing that it is so much easier to get common medicine as here, it is not. We are beyond grateful for the opportunities we have experienced here in the doniminican and would love to that Seven Even Elements for the time we have spent here. Thank You to the Seven Elements team for making our time here worth every second of hard work.

Bailey and Audrey

June 9th  

            Today was one of the excursion days that was planned for the YAC students. We started our day with an amazing breakfast that included eggs and potatoes. We had roughly and hour bus ride to Dudu Lagoon where we all listened to music and sang along on the bus. Once we got to Dudu a group of us went through these caves that were huge. Following that we went to see the zip line that all the advisors had talked about. Triton, Kayla, Isabelle, and Bailey all went on the zip line they all said it was such a rush. The other half of the group went down to the bottom area of the lagoon and went swimming. There was a bridge we all ran and jumped off into the water. There was loud fun music playing that was just fun such as lil pump. The area to swim was kind of in a cave. It is hard to describe how awesome this area was and the beauty it holds. After we all were done swimming we went to lunch within the vicinity where we had a buffet style lunch. After lunch we had a little more free time before we left for preciosa beach. The weather was perfect and the water was unbelievably blue. Many of us got drinks from this vendor. We hung out there for a while before coming back to the lodge and having dinner and lecture for the night. The lecture was about case studies one which was about over working doctors. This was an impeccable day that was relaxing and memorable. 

-Jenna and Dannie 

 

June 10th  

            Today was the hardest days of our trip.  We may be yoopers, but dang.  Today we worked on the water tank in Caño Dulce.  This was the site of our first medical brigade and reforestation project.  The work we did today included hauling cinder blocks and gravel/sand up a small dirt path up a steep hill.  (That hill was steeeeeeepppppppppp).  We started this project  with gusto, but quickly found that the Dominican heat and humidity is a far greater adversary than we first expected.  After multiple group members vomited, morale was low.  We knew we needed a change in our approach.  We formed a chain, passing along cinder block and buckets of sand, so each of us only had to go a short way.  We did a great job of encouraging each other and keeping positive.  When trying to complete a project like this, keeping positive is very important, but more important is listening to your body and not over exerting yourself.  We all looked out for each other’s safety and well-being.  And just when the day seemed like it couldn’t get any hotter, a gift fell from the sky. A short tropical rain shower provided us with some much needed relief from the heat, but it made the small dirt path up the steep hill almost impossible to climb, and our work day came to an end.  This project was important because it taught us what hard work looks like in a different way.  Also, we didn’t complete the entire project, and it showed us the importance of doing your part to contribute to the larger good.

            Once back at the lodge we presented our capstone projects.  These projects were ideas that we could bring to a community similar to the ones we have been working in.  Some of the projects focused on harnessing the power of water, as drought has been a recurring problem in the communities we visited and worked in.  Access to water is essential to life and being from the Great Lakes region, we often take water for granted.  Some of the other projects focused on recycling.  Our group at home have been involved in community beautification projects, so picking up trash off the streets is something we are familiar with.  Coming to the Dominican Republic, we were a little shocked to see the amount of trash that was present on the streets, communities, and even the fields of rural areas.  Overall, it was a very informative day and we were able to share some of the 7e lessons we have learned and apply them, something we can take forward into our lives back home, and perhaps even BACK TO THE DR!!!  

-Adam and Trinity

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