First Christian Church, Girard, Kansas, trip to Dominican Republic, March, 2006
March 18-26, 2006, a group from First Christian Church, Girard, Kansas, traveled to Boca Chica, Dominican Republic, on a People-to-People Pilgrimage. The group of thirteen (11 from Girard, Kansas, and 2 from Gainesville, Florida) spent their week in Boca Chica, 30 miles east of Santo Domingo. They were hosted by Caminante, a group sponsored by the Catholic Church, Church World Service, and social services of the Dominican government. This group works with children commonly exploited by the sex and drug trade industries. This program is administered by Denise Pichardo, a Roman Catholic nun who is a Dominican native.
The group divided into three teams: medical, building, and sewing. The medical team, together with Caminante partner professionals, saw 550 patients during the week and dispensed over $10,000 of medication from MAP International. The building team spent a week working in Port Andreas, rebuilding and painting walls that had been torn down by years of storms and wear. The sewing team worked in several community centers, teaching youth and adults new sewing skills. Additionally, the group donated a sewing machine, several pounds of clothing, sewing materials, and school supplies.