April 5, 2016

Pink and Red

Gateway 2016 School2School HANDS Team:

We knew that today was an important day. It was to be our last full day in Nicaragua, and we only had a handful of hours at our work site to get the job done. Peter and Trudy Kuipers, our hosts/ess with the mosts/ess are coming home only a few days after us, and wouldn't have time to wrap things up if we couldn't finish. Last Friday we showed up at the work site for the first time, and were greeted with dancing, fruit and thankful hearts. Today, we arrived and the gates were locked. We needed to be let in. But once we got behind the gates and inside, we worked tirelessly to get things done. Everything needed a second coat of pink paint. The building here is so much different. Everything is open air, so wind can pass through the hot classrooms, but metal bars adorn all of the spaces. Most walls are concrete or plaster, and some aren't all that smooth, so applying paint can be tiresome. The paint itself is an oil based glop that really does go on, but is a bit hard to get off. Clothes that were splattered are probably not coming back with us.

I say we worked tirelessly, but truly, some of us are quite tired. We've been spending 18 days in 38-40 degree heat, away from home and regular comforts, and only one mom on the trip to keep everybody smiling and comforted. One student in particular felt the overwhelming exhaustion today, and boy did we make him pay...

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Seriously how can you fall asleep in that position? And how can you stay sleeping? And how do you not notice all of the photos? Sweet!

Luke and Conner began to help Netty, a contractor hired by EduDeo that has helped with many school building projects over the course of the year, prepare the kitchen floor (previously dirt) for tile. They were amazing all day, and just as we wrapped up at 2:30, they had the excess grout wrapped off. Beautiful job boys!!

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We have spent a lot of hours in our old cheese wagon. The bus was our life line. Everything we did, we'd pile on to get to. Mauricio, was our driver beyond compare. The guy is seriously talented. He's been a huge help to us here, like all of the people that we work with!

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We felt like we had done good work, and were happy with how things turned out by the end. Peter gave a wonderul speech about how far the school had come in the last couple of years - a new roof, new floor, and now fresh paint. Looks like a different place. We were happy to help!

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The pastor of the church and his wife provided a snack of fresh fruit in the morning, and prayed for us to bless us as we went our way. Lydia, the principal was also there helping to clean up. Group picture!


We made it home to the Nehemiah Center by 4, and spent time in a group debrief with our EduDeo leaders. Everyone talked about what they enjoyed about the trip, we prayed together, and then said our goodbyes.

Students had time to hang out together for one final evening, pack their bags, and get ready for the long day of travel tomorrow. See many of you in 24 hours!!


Karla-Maria Ponce
Apr 6, 2016 at 10:24 am


I got a kick out of reading this blog. I know HANDS Trips can be tiring but this takes it to a whole other level!

We are praying for safe travels today! Can't wait to hear more upon your arrival :)

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