What an exciting couple of weeks it has been! We have finally arrived in Berbice and found our home away from home in Letter Kenny. All four of us arrived last Monday with Ali at our side. Our first day was spent getting settled in our new surroundings and meeting the local kids in Letter Kenny. On Tuesday, we explored our new surroundings and were invited by one of our local contacts to visit a celebration for the Guyanese holiday Indian Arrival Day. We viewed some traditional Indian dances and music, while also meeting our local contacts in Berbice.
|Home sweet home!|
As Wednesday rolled around, we were busy visiting schools and discussing with Headmasters where we can be most effective teaching over the next few weeks. Thursday was more of the same, which made for two persistently busy days. With most of our schedule solidified by Thursday, we were able to begin teaching on Friday! Vinyas and Jamie visited Lower Corentyne Secondary and Vrymans Erven Training Center where they delivered introductory lessons in general health and mental health. Ben and Erin were able to contact a few new schools and develop weekly teaching times there. In the afternoon, they taught a different class at Lower Corentyne. The Berbice crew was very excited to get in classrooms and in front of students! Unfortunately on Friday we had to say good-bye to our wise and endlessly patient Program Director Ali as she headed back home to Canada. She left us with so much wisdom and we are eager to carry on the Berbice initiative!
The PE’s from Georgetown have been in Berbice for most of this week because the majority of schools were closed due to elections. We have enjoyed each other’s company and have been hard at work on a few new projects. We are hoping to develop a training day for Guyanese volunteers to instruct mental health as well as a commercial to promote mental health awareness. These projects have provided an opportunity to stay engaged in our work here while schools have been closed.
On Wednesday, the Berbice PE’s were glad to be able to resume teaching. Ben and Erin headed to Skeldon for a full day of classes at Massiah Primary, Tagore Secondary, and Number 59 Primary. Vinyas and Jamie also had a busy day as they instructed a class at Lower Corentyne and solidified their curriculum for Rose Hall Primary.
Today has been a rainy day with schools closed again, but spirits are high amongst the Guyana PE’s as we look forward to a new beginning next week and developing a steady schedule. We have had brief glimpses of our teaching impacts and are looking forward to what future weeks will hold!
Ben, Erin, Jamie, Vinyas