Integration Day…in the eyes of a volunteer.

Volunteer Andrew shares with us his experience of last Sunday’s integration Day in Flor de Bastión!

A group song to unite the two Starfish neighborhoods.

Jenn celebrating with the June birthday girls!

“I got to experience the grand fiesta known as integration day where the refuerzo students from Guasmo got to reunite with their counterparts in Flor De Bastion for a day. This was definitely something that I will not soon be able to forget. Just taking a bus load of kids to Flor was an interesting experience. 

Andrew & Danny with the Guasmo crew after their bus ride!
Once we got to Flor de Bastión the party was a really fun way to just relax with the kids in a way that we normally can’t during the week when the kids all have school. Dancing is very important here in Ecuador and I got a a chance to experience that fact first hand on the dance floor. Even Jaren, my 8 year old best friend in Ecuador, can pull of those Michael Jackson moves effectively. 

Jaren showing off his dance moves!
Sra. Elena, mom of 3 Starfish scholars and a huge supporter, pulls Andrew & Danny out onto the dance floor!
On top of dancing we played a few really cool games and we had some special presentations. A few of the kids from Flor presented some love songs they had been practicing, one of which was in English.
Dayanna and Maria Belen singing & dancing!
Mayerly, Andreina, Briggette, Genesis and Nagelhi showing off their dance moves!
On top of that the Guasmo kids wrote and presented a play of their own about the negative effects of drugs and alcohol which they some how managed to achieve in a comedic light. 
Solange and Valeria performing the skit.
The best part though was just getting the chance to see how the community really came together here to celebrate what Starfish has to offer. I know that a lot of work went into making Integration Day possible and it really wouldn’t have been possible without the people who donated the time and material and space to make this all possible. 
Starfish employees from both neighborhoods with Starfish directors Jenn & Beth
Starfish scholar Cristhian with his mom, younger sister Noelia, and  siblings and Starfish Employees Tyrone and Jasmin.
It is clear to me that Starfish is primarily a community organization, the outside money helps make everything that Starfish does possible but in the end it is the communities in both Flor and Guasmo that work together to take advantage of what Starfish has to offer.”
Jenn & Beth


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