Monday, January 25, 2010

my week of soirees!

My social calendar this week has been fuera de control! Everyone in Cabarete has been scrambling to do what we can to help out in Haiti. It seems that everything there is still too disorganized for more volunteers to be of much help (especially non-Creole speaking, non-medical professional ones), so we've been focusing on fundraising efforts. Here in Cabarete there are enough tourists and expats that there are plenty of funds to be tapped, unlike in a lot of Peace Corps sites.

DREAM held two events. We had a pulga (flea market) here in the barrio--a bunch of people donated used clothing to us, which we sold to the residents of the Callejon. They got cheap clothing, we raised 25,000 pesos for Haitian relief. I myself spent $400 pesos on a new wallet, purse, and T-shirt. Everyone wins!

We also had a fancier event downtown, aimed at tourists & expats. We sold art made by the students, as well as a lot of jewelry donated by local businesses. There we made $40,000 pesos. Wow! (To put this in perspective--my entire monthly salary is $13,000 pesos.) In total we raised over $5000 US.

Remember my T-shirt tote bags? Here are some, after being decorated by the kids.

Here's some of the donated jewelry. I ended up buying the white button necklace.

Me and Lindsey, both wearing hot pink and posing in front of the donated higüero lanterns. Also, I'm wearing my new button necklace!

We also had a groundbreaking ceremony at DREAM. We got funding to build a few new classrooms for our center, hooray! And Celines Toribio, a Dominican actress/model, came to be our celebrity guest. She was really fun with the kids and, claro, extremely pretty. (I didn't bring my camera that day, alas.)

On Sunday evening, a few friends organized a FUNraiser (get it... because it's fun) at a local bar. There was a silent auction, and all of us DREAM volunteers made out like bandits! I spent $600 pesos on $1000 pesos worth of gift certificates at the two restaurants we always eat at. Hooray! Plus, I'm helping Haiti. I am a hero! A hero entitled to $1000 pesos worth of pizza and mojitos! This is the best kind of hero to be.

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