Day Two

Early this morning, we headed into El Cocal to speak with some of the stakeholders in the community. Day one had equipped us with a basic understanding of the people and environment but, today we took the next important step into gaining a deeper understanding of the interacting factors within the community. Stories from elders like Doña Nicasia and Don Enrique not only gave us a sense of empathy but, provided us with different perspectives of their diverse values, desires, and attitudes.

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Mangos, Mangos, Mangos

During our interview with Doña Nicasia, an elder and an active participant in driving change within the community, mangos dropped from the several trees in the yard, sometimes bouncing off the sheet metal roof of their shed. At the end of our conversation, I asked what they did with those mangos. They then answered me by gifting me a box full of the beautiful ripe fruit. This gesture reinforced that feeling being welcome that I felt from day one and gave us a genuine interaction with the type of people we will be working during the next few weeks. These are people who are struggling to receive the necessary daily resources but are still willing to give.

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The Youth

Just from walking onto the beach, the state of the current waste management solutions were visible. A hole in the ground accompanied by a burning pit was situated behind the kids playground. The youth have no vision for the community. They go to school, try to get through it and whether they do or not, they will most likely end up working outside of the community.” Don Enrique expressed to us his worries regarding the disconnect between the youth and the ownership of the land and how this plays a large role in progressing toward a modernization of the current waste management system.

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