Our work at PPA in Lima is just wonderful! It is a place that fills you up love, kindness, and affection because being surrounded by children and people that care for them is something that is fulfilling for the soul. What could our volunteers appreciate more than feeling not only welcome by the community but spending their days surrounded by children who only what to give you their genuine love.
Our experience there this time around has been very fulfilling; the interaction with the children has been amazing. In the mornings we spend precious time with the toddles at the Niño Jesus and San Vicente homes. Joe spends the morning at San Vicente with the 4 to 5 y/o boys who get very excited to see him. They normally play and draw in the morning so Joe takes some of the games and toys we have in our office and plays with them for most of the morning. The little boys love spending time with Joe and every morning when they see him they run to him to hug him and welcome him back. Language is absolutely no barrier for them to communicate because love is the language they all speak in.
Meanwhile, Jill is with the toddlers at Niño Jesus and she has tiny 1 and 2 y/o girls and boys with who she has created a bond. At first the little ones were doubtful about holding her hand or being with her, but little by little Jill’s caring and love has made them become close to her hence their excitement when they see her come in. Jill is a very loving person who cares so much about these children and who is willing to give all her love and caring to them.
Later in the morning we go to the PTC where they each work with kids who have trouble with their fine and gross motor skills. Both Joe and Jill are amazed at how Maria, the physiotherapist, is able to achieve such practice with things that cost next to nothing like a balloon, or play dough, or a funnel and a ball for eye-hand coordination. They actually said they would put into practice all they’ve learned at the PTC with their grand children because it is so helpful but and at the same time so much fun, plus they see how all this creates a stronger bond between the child and the volunteer. Both Joe and Jill are very patient at guiding the children in their daily activities.
In the afternoon we are spending an amazing time with a family of 6 whom have all been at the PPA for a little more than a year. We were all very touched to see them get together for the first time after a long time. They were all very emotional the first time they met; the oldest sister told us they had not seen each other in a very long time. The volunteers and I were very emotional too, for it was very touching to see them hugging and shedding a tear or two. All six are very loving with each other, the two older sisters care a lot for the smaller ones and the eldest sister is always talking to the youngest ones as if she were their mom and telling them what is better for them. We are all amazed at how smart they all are. The 4 y/o sister is just a very happy, bubbly little girl, she talks all the time, and dances, and plays with the volunteers and her brother and sisters. After getting together for about 2 hours we go visit the 2 youngest ones at their homes because the 3 y/o sister does not want to leave her home yet, she feels a little alien to the rest of her siblings. After that we visit the seven month old baby brother because he has been sick with hay fever and it is recommended that we do not take him out in the open. It has been a wonderful experience bonding with these 6 children full of love to give. The volunteers are very happy working with them and the children enjoy every minute of our siblings program.
We have also done gardening this week. I must say that our two volunteers at PPA are experts in gardening and have done a wonderful job in the decoration of the circular garden. Way to go guys, It looks great!!!! We have planted Geraniums and Silver dust. It just looks so pretty all put together in a decorative way.
Mondays and Wednesdays we have the friend-to-friend program and we have been getting together with some very wonderful children. Joe and Jill have one or 2 children each and they spend most of the afternoon playing games and drawing and coloring and just giving out their love to these wonderful children. Every day the bond grows stronger and they all receive a lot of love from each other. These little children only want love and affection from our volunteers and our volunteers are more than willing to give all this to them. It is very fulfilling to see how all this happens and realize that language is no barrier; they all get along so well and enjoy each other while our SP takes place.
Global volunteers has really showed me that no matter where you go or what you do, the universal language of love makes a lot of things possible, in this case, making absolutely everyone happy!