In the Race
blending life’s color lines

Back from Jamaica

Spring break is officially over 😦 and I’m already back to the grind of classes and piles of homework. Even more depressing is the fact that my trip to Jamaica is over. It was an amazing experience being a part of the Alternative Spring Break team and helping to improve the lives of 35 young school children at the God’s School. The following post will be a bit off topic, but I really want to share a bit of my past week’s experience with everyone.

ASB team at with the God's School family

ASB team with the God's School family

We accomplished so much in just four days of working at the school. A majority of the time was spent teaching lessons to both the three and four-year-old classroom and the five and six-year-old classroom. The younger students learned about healthy foods and what they can do for your body, versus unhealthy foods and how they make you weak and ill. The older children learned about weather, how to tell time, and practiced writing in their journals.

Reading "One Duck Stuck" to the kids

Reading "One Duck Stuck" to the kids

When we were not in the classrooms, we worked on improving the small school building along with the playground. We began by bringing cheer to the playground and painted everything from swing-sets to monkey-bars. Our bright colored paint really livened up the school yard amidst the multitude of earth-tones that supplied in nature. We also added a balance beam to the premises to add another area for the children to play. The boy’s bathroom, and the school’s joint bookshelf also received a beautiful red paint job.

A student admires her the colorful playground

A student admires her the colorful playground

On the last day at the school we were able to present them with a whole new collection of books, toy trucks, and a wide variety of essential school supplies. Seeing their sincere gratitude made the trip that much more special to our team.

Aside from the community service aspect of the trip, I learned a great deal about the Jamaican culture. It was my first time out of the country and the only prior visions of the island I had came from Caribbean tourist attractions. I quickly learned that Jamaica is much more than just a beautiful beach with clear blue water. Aside from working with the wonderful God’s School children, my favorite thing about our trip was the fact that we stayed in a small countryside village, far away from tourists and their five-star hotels. We slept in a beautiful, family owned inn a mere fifty steps away from the gorgeous Treasure Beach. It was there where we met many locals who were VERY eager to talk to each and every one of us for as long as we would let them. In our conversations I learned that Treasure Beach has only about 850 people living in the area and they basically all know each other or are related. A majority of them make their incomes from farming, with mango, bananas, and an illegal substance being their main crops.

Treasure Beach

Treasure Beach

With Sepe, the local artisan with 8 foot dreads

With Sepe, the local artisan with 8 foot dreads

All of our meals were prepared by a woman who cooked for the neighborhood as her main source of income along with owning a small shop. We were able to try all of the typical Jamaican foods such as curry chicken, rice and beans, festival (a cornmeal fried dumpling) and a variety of tropical fruits and vegetables while looking out at the Jamaican hillside.

One day's breakfast featuring the delicious festival

One day's breakfast featuring the delicious festival

It truly was an amazing experience that I would recommend to anyone looking to make a difference in a short amount of time. I made wonderful friends and came away with memories that will truly last a lifetime.

A final view of Jamaica from the plane

A final view of Jamaica from the plane

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2 Responses to “Back from Jamaica”

  1. […] Kristie went to Jamaica on an alternative spring break and has some great pics on her blog! […]

  2. your pictures are so fabulous! im so glad you had such an incredible time!


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