In life there are dreamers who believe that the impossible can be realised. Among them are the future of society, the children who dream of becoming teachers, professional football players, even superheroes.
Kevin, a 9 year old boy living in the rural community of Belén, is such a child. Kevin’s dream goes beyond wanting to fulfil a personal desire, his wish was to have a school playground, which he and his friends could enjoy.
Toward the end of every cycle we as national volunteers stage a day of action. As part of this we develop a project that we feel could have a positive impact on those we work with. After considering what would be best for the people of Belén, we came to hear of Kevin’s wish for a playground. What better way to give back to the community than by doing something for its most important members; its children.
Upon hearing the news that his dream was to be realised Kevin was incredibly excited, joining us in our search for local materials that were needed to begin construction. The response from the community was amazing. For four sweltering days the volunteers, with the help of the people of Belén, set to work on constructing the playground.
As the playground began to take shape, the curiosity of the children grew. Their faces as they looked on encouraged us to persevere with our work, imbuing each volunteer with the energy to get the project finished on time.
Finally the promised day arrived. The school and community had come together to prepare a small opening ceremony to honor the occasion. Kevin sat in the front row, sitting patiently through the ceremony, constantly stealing glances at the playground waiting for him. The twenty minutes spent waiting for the official opening of the playground were probably the longest of his life. Then came the time to cut the ribbon, the children rushed forward, and the dream became a reality.
The enthusiasm surrounding the community was inspiring, not only for the children, but also for the parents, who were happy their children had a place to relax, laugh and enjoy after a full day of learning.
Through our day of action we have managed to make a real difference to one of the most marginalised and humble communities in Honduras. Though our material resources were limited, the enthusiasm and willingness to cooperate shown by the community allowed us to overcome any obstacle, showing with the right attitude anything is possible. For the ICS volunteers, the thought of children like Kevin enjoying the playground for many years to come is a heart-warming prospect that will linger long in the memory.
Often the task of how to help the people that need it most can seem overwhelming. During our work in Belén, from the projects inception to its joyous completion, in a small way we have shared our lives with the people of the community. It is through acts such as these that we grow as people, help transform lives and make dreams such as Kevin’s come true.
"Do not tear down our dreams... We must break down the barriers that prevent us from fulfilling them.”
A special thanks to the national and UK ICS volunteers, to the children, the community of Belén and Progressio ICS for making this possible.
Written by ICS national Group Leader Rony Estrada