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Friday, August 2, 2013

An Introduction to our Centres!



Time has been flying by in Bolivia and it’s hard to believe we have already been here over a month. Since arriving, I have been working with 2 team members, Inti and Stephen, in centres Las Lomas and Avance.

In-country volunteer Inti at Las Lomas
While we are in the centers and the office, we are observing and undertaking research into hygiene and common illnesses in La Paz. This is to help with our work creating an educational module on preventable diseases to be used across centers in La Paz. I am also researching learning styles, educational techniques, alternative education and the curriculum in Bolivia to help with the creation of the education module, while Stephen is undertaking research about working with children with disabilities and the how people with disabilities are treated in Bolivia.  
Las Lomas is located in the Buenos Aires area of La Paz and takes around half an hour to get to from our home in Llojeta. It’s in a beautiful region and there are great views from the centre. It’s a large centre with 657 children aged from 2 to 18 years old.


In Las Lomas we have been helping the educators with a range of activities. On our first visit we continued painting a mural that the previous cohort had made an excellent start to! Our next few visits were a bit more hectic as we were working in classrooms with children aged 4-5, helping with arts and crafts, which proved to be challenging as the children seemed to enjoy eating glue and playing with scissors and biting us! So we have decided to learn how to say useful Spanish phrases to help with behavior management in future… like “put down the glue”. In Las Lomas we have also been helping to create a safe and welcoming working environment by the children, by rearranging the furniture and decorating the classrooms. 


Sarah supporting young people in Las Lomas
The other center we are working in is called Avance and is further from our house in Chasquipampa, one of the poorer areas of La Paz. Here we have been working in smaller classrooms with children aged 5-10 years old, mostly helping with sewing and other creative activities. 

We've really enjoyed getting to know the centes and the young people we will be working with, and look forward to building relationships future and having a positive impact across our centres.  

Written by Sarah Johannes

Edited by Sarah Cassidy

To find out about International Service's ICS projects and stay up to date with our latest activities, please visit our blogs and 'like' our facebook page:

UpClose Bolivia
 Aldeas Infantiles - Entrepreneurial Education
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