Volunteer at Mi Tia Daycare Center in Costa Rica

Mary Beth Wendelin - Costa Rica

Mary Beth Wendelin - Costa Rica

Volunteer Period:    July 1-31, 2005

Mi Tía Daycare Center.

Mary is a very spiritual young lady, jovial, polite, always eager to help out and very respectful. Her contribution in this social work included:
·  Teaching of the English language: She worked with children in small groups and she taught them basic English vocabulary, such as: colors, numbers, greetings, and Christian Children’s songs.
·  She helped the school children with their academic homework not only in English, but also in science, social studies and others.
·  She worked with the children’s art activities manuals.
·  In the camp she contributed (as did everyone): biblical reflections, she promoted values in the children such as solidarity, camaraderie, respect for others and for nature through games, songs, and walks. She also contributed by serving in the dining room, taking care of babies at night, and when any issues presented themselves, she was always willing to help. During the camp we had an episode of diarrhea, that affected the majority of the participants (children and personnel) in the early morning of one of the days, and she, who thanks to God, didn’t suffer from diarrhea, was helping the others; it was probably a gastrointestinal reaction to some food, because it passed in one day, thank God.
·  She helped the adolescents with their homework and high school obligations. She also inspired feelings such as responsibility, mutual respect, solidarity, empathy, and caring for themselves with respect to their health and their integrity in general as human beings.

Her mark in this social work:
·  When talking to the children, sometimes they say the colors, numbers, and greetings in English and in Spanish indistinctly and naturally; they use the words as if they were synonyms.
·  The school children have improved the presentation of some of their work with techniques taught by Mary.
·  The mothers are familiar with the anecdotes that their children say and they appear very excited when their children sing to them or tell them a prayer in English. They remember Mary with affection, because she shared with them, she loved them a lot, and she treated them with respect and tenderness.
·  The adolescents with whom she shared, were able to acquire new expectations in their lives. They changed their appreciation for life and learned how life’s experiences can help them grow in their spirituality; all of this thanks to the time shared with Mary.
·  The most important thing that Mary shared with everyone was her love for her brothers; a very spiritual youth, responsible and tolerant, who with her dynamism and sweetness captivated each one of us.

·  She went to the beaches of Guanacaste one weekend, with two friends from the Daycare Center.
·  She went to the mountains.
·  She also went to church every Sunday with Almitra Desueza.
·  And overall she became a great friend. Now we have another sister to love and to pray for.

In order to explain Mary’s work, there are no words that permit us to explain with real eloquence what it was like to share with her. She showed great tenderness and love toward the children, regardless of their age, but she also had the poise and maturity necessary to correct and instruct those that needed it. She handled different situations, sometimes of conflict or disorder between the children.

Mary is one of those who quickly does what should be done, even if no one tells her.
In summary,
Mary stayed in the Daycare Center for one month. Even though she has been gone for more than a month, we still miss her.  Mary became one of us in this social work; always willing to help.

Many thanks for allowing us to share with this child of God.

Mary Beth Wendelin served as a short-term volunteer with the "Asociacion Centro Materno Infantil Mi Tia," in Costa Rica.  She worked in the summer camp and day care program assisting teachers with daily activities.