Education opportunities for rural Hondurans are spotty at best, so Mission Lazarus has begun several Early Childhood Development Centers. These provide basic education and meals for many young children. Parents are charged a minimal fee (less than US$1 per month) - we were told that the fee is mainly to encourage a sense of involvement with the ECDC's.
Some members of our team have elementary education experience, so they spent some time helping the teachers. The rest of us helped with the construction of a new ECDC in Duyure, a beautiful village in the hills near the Nicaraguan border. The building's walls and roof had been constructed by other volunteers, so we did the next step: putting in a couple of inches of gravel base for the floors and pouring the concrete surface.
We brought a cement mixer from the main ML facility near San Marcos to Duyure. This is 15-20 miles through the mountains on a gravel road. Tip: Don't EVER buy a used pickup truck that's seen service in Honduras.
The cement mixer was a great help but it's had a lot of wear and tear, so getting it
started and keeping it running was a challenge. We had 3 engineers, 2 preachers, and
an MIT rocket scientist all working to keep it going.
Our team spent 4 days moving wheelbarrow loads of gravel and concrete. There were
a bunch of niņos and niņas (boys and girls) from the town watching - and sharing
the snacks and lunches we brought. By the second day
the boys wanted to help: at first we would dump a wheelbarrow load in the building
and the kids would grab the empty wheelbarrow and