Today marks my second day volunteering at CENIT, a nonprofit in the south of Quito, so I thought I’d write a little bit about the organization and my experience working there thus far. CENIT, which stands for El Centro de la Niña Trabajadora (Center for the (girl) child worker), is a nonprofit organization that aims to help youth in the south of Quito by providing them with a variety of services, ranging from healthcare (both physical and mental) to education. I actually first found out about CENIT through a local Irish pub. The pub has a trivia night every Tuesday, and the money they raise goes to CENIT.
CENIT has a lot of different areas where one can volunteer, ranging from tutoring to psychological services. I’m working in the medical clinic, but it turns out that our responsibilities are far more diverse than simply attending to basic ailments. Over my two days at CENIT, I have:
-helped distribute snacks
-watched the “baby of the clinic,” Johnny, who is the son of one of the teenage students.
-helped distribute anti parasite medication as part of an annual anti parasite campaign
-helped make chocolate chip cookies. I’ll need to explain this one a bit more. My first day of volunteering was also the day that the volunteers and staff members at CENIT had a sort of international potluck, where everyone brought in food from their home country. I obviously didn’t know about it beforehand since it was my first day, but the American volunteers had decided to make chocolate chip cookies, and they needed someone to bake them.
-helped make a poster detailing the importance of eating breakfast and packing a balanced lunch.
Next week, my responsibilities will continue to be diverse in nature, as Friday, March 8, is El Día De La Mujer, or Women’s Day. In celebration, CENIT is having a parade, and each different area of CENIT will prepare costumes/some sort of presentation. At least I think that’s what’s happening; my Spanish could be wayyy off.
On one last note, as a shameless plug for CENIT…
The organization is currently competing in a contest sponsored by tellusworld.org. If they receive enough votes, they could win $5,000, which would be extremely useful in financing their essential services. Please take a couple of minutes to make an account here http://tellusworld.org/user so that you can vote for CENIT! After your account is made you can vote for CENIT: http://tellusworld.org/entry/centro-de-la-ni%C3%B1-trabajadora (the “Vote” button will not show up until you have created an account).
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<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Claire Fishman is a junior at Brandeis University, majoring in Psychology. Outside of class, she enjoys singing with the university’s chorus and playing flute with a student orchestra. Her hobbies include reading, writing, cooking. Claire has traveled to Central America twice (Costa Rica and Honduras), but this will be her first time in South America. Despite having grown up in a large city, she loves spending time in nature, and looks forward to exploring the biodiversity of Ecuador. As someone who loves to travel and try new things, Claire is thrilled to be embarking on this adventure!</span></p>