Quentin: “El Porvenir is a community of benevolent souls cradled in a haven of peace.”
Hello! My name is Quentin, I am 23 years old and I have been volunteering for a little over 2 months with the Honduras Child Alliance. A fabulous experience cut in half due to the global corona epidemic.
It all started at the end of my graduate studies. Freshly graduated, it was the perfect time for me to take the plunge by finally committing myself to a meaningful cause rather than starting a professional life of my own. I had an overwhelming desire to confront the unknown, to feel useful by putting my time at the service of others, but above all, the need to open my eyes a little more to the reality of the world.
After going through the different AIME projects, my choice is the HCA project in Honduras. The association is a real favorite and I am convinced that Latin America is the continent that suits me the most. It is also my desire to make my own idea of Honduras that confirms this decision. A country whose reputation is all too often summed up by its gang wars and violence. daily. So I see this volunteering as a great opportunity to discover behind the scenes of a country that I suspect is beautiful from the inside.
As soon as I arrived in the small town of El Porvenir, I was welcomed very warmly by the entire volunteer team. Very quickly I find my place in this new family and start to take my place day after day. At the beginning, my biggest fear was not to be able to integrate a group of volunteers already well established, to feel “too much”, but I quickly realize that everyone is happy with each new arrival, the family is growing every week for the greatest happiness of all.
But what does life at HCA look like in real life?
It’s hard to say because the days are so different from one another, but it’s just that it’s the whole point! Initially, I participated in Dentist Week, an annual event major for the organization during which the children of the community are invited to perform a check-up of their oral hygiene. An important week for me since it was my first meeting with the kids, and the feeling went right through ! We take care of reassuring them, playing with them, taking them to school or calling the parents, in short, a very busy day. At the end of this first week, I realize that the next few months are going to be absolutely brilliant.
It would be too long to detail all the projects in which I took part, but here are a few examples of missions on which one can be led to invest oneself each week 🙂
Preparing classes, creating teaching aids (videos, flashcards, materials), flyering to promote the association’s activities within the community, creating a garden and compost within PEP 3, painting and decorating classrooms, creating content for social networks or engaging in various crowdfunding campaigns. There is something for everyone!
But the most beautiful memories for me will remain all the moments I spent with the children in the classroom. I was so surprised and delighted at how easy it is to bond so quickly with each one of them… children full of joy and overflowing energy on a daily basis, a real joy to be with.
And what about life after school, El Porvenir is a community of caring souls cradled in a haven of peace. I felt at ease very quickly with the inhabitants, there is a very strong link between the organization and Porvenir because the association has been established here for 10 years. From the firemen to the pulperia sellers to the motorcycle taxi drivers, you will be welcomed with open arms. The environment is heavenly: Porvenir is a clever mix between sea and mountain, an infinite beach, rivers and waterfalls, indecent sunsets and very rare torrential rains. A cocktail of flavours: pineapples, mangos, pastelitos, pollo frito, tajadas, baleadas and relámpagos will soon be your best friends!
Finally, how can we not mention that beyond this mission you will have the incredible chance to share these fabulous moments of life with other volunteers from all over the world. And this is probably one of the most beautiful rewards of this trip, I had memorable encounters and unique moments with this HCA family.
Let’s not hesitate and go for it, it’s the experience of a lifetime! (promised)