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University of Arkansas

November 18, 2018
Sunday, the 18th of November, 2018, is one of the most memorable days in our lives. In Puerto Rico, we spent wonderful moments exploring the area. The tour we had was full of new experiences and interesting places. We were very impressed to see several castles that they were huge stations in the past. Also, we expanded our knowledge of Puerto Rico and the history of it. At downtown, we could see historical buildings and houses that have been there for more than thousand years. Generally, and beside the fun we had, we feel very proud of ourselves that we got to know all of those interesting things of Puerto Rico.

By Nawaf and Maan

November 19, 2018
After having a delicious breakfast with our lovely group, we went to our work site in a local community, Villa Del Rio. There. We met our new partners, William, Victor, Angel, Noel, and Eggy, who are going to work with us for the rest of this unique experience. These partners were people from the same community we were helping. The site was a damaged house by a storm, and that house is owned by William’s grandmother. After having a quick tour around that site, we were told what we had to do, and we were taught how to do the work. With a full level of excitement we started the project. The weather was hot and sunny, we really wanted to do the work in as short time as possible. We were all sweating, and working hard. The Community leader, William,  was expecting this project to be done in two days, I am proud to say that we have finished this project in only one day even though we were only a group of 10 people.

After finishing the project the feeling that we had when we saw the owner’s face , was such a big deal because we know that these people do not have the financial abilities to afford building a house that can give them a safe shutter in a case of a storm just like the one they had. By giving them this place with out asking them for something in return, we are giving them a dream  that unfortunately most of this world’s people don’t have. All in all, I only want to say that I am glad to be here. I’m proud of my self and my group who worked really really hard to be here for these great people who need help. Lots of gratitudes for our group leader Lindsey, who made sure in all ways possible that we are feeling comfortable. Two more days of cement work. we are trying to get as much work done here as possible!

By Fars & Faisal

November 20, 2018
With sweaty faces and shirts, we finished the second project in one day, which should have been done in two days. After having a delicious breakfast in our compound, we headed to Maria’s house, the second site. The plan was to fill the balcony and the stairs with concrete, so we needed to add sand, rocks, and cement to the mixer. Then, after having these materials mixed, we shoveled the concrete into the baskets and pass them to Victor, who is a member of the community. Although it seems an easy job, it was a baking hot day and a small crowded workspace. Nonetheless, having the chemistry and the teamwork between us, we were able to overcome these difficulties. At the end, having finished the job in a significantly short time, we had more rewarding time chilling at the beach.

By Abdullah A. and Moayad A.

November 21, 2018

Despite being exhausted because of the first two days, we went to do the floor for one of the houses. My group and I finished the work in three hours, and it was so good. We finished the work because we had a good plan, so the team work was perfect, and everyone had his/her own job. After finishing this project, we had a very delicious thanksgiving meal which was made by Maria who is the owner of the house that we helped on the previous project. Next, we went to one of the most astonishing beaches that anyone of us has ever seen in his/her life. Finally, we went back to the house in which we are living, and we had lunch. Before going to bed, we cleaned all the house and the area next to it. Everyone is thankful for what Global Works did in this week for us, and this day was one of the most memorable days we have ever been in.

By Mohammad A.

November 22, 2018
Today we woke up earlier than any other day. 5:30! We had a boat to catch on the other side of the island. Because we finished out work in the community early, we had an extra day for adventuring! We met Alvin at the dock and got our gear for snorkeling. We headed out on the “day off”, which was coincidentally the boat’s name. Today way Moyad’s 19th birthday! While snorkeling, we say a bunch of sea turtles, 2 sting ray, a manatee, a jelly fish, and a spiny star fish. Some of us were nervous, considering this was our first time snorkeling and being in open ocean, but this was an experience we didn’t want to miss. After our catamaran ride, we headed back to Casa Coral where we had some time to catch a nap in the hammocks and soak in the river.

We finished our night with a tour of the bio luminescent bay, where millions of phytoplankton live. When agitated, they glow a blueish color. When we splashed each other it was like glowing stars. One of the coolest things ever! When we got back to casa coral. A Thanksgiving feast was waiting for us, made with love by Tyrone’s father (Tyrone is the owner of Casa Coral and a Global Works leader!).

We met a mom and her daughter from France who had many interesting stories of their travels and volunteering around the world. We ate under the full moon together and sang happy birthday to Moyad. The song was sung is 8 different languages, and truly a reflection of collaboration and blending of cultures. What a day to be thankful for. Despite being away from our families, we have found comfort in knowing that life is made by the people you surround yourself with, and the experiences you have.
by Lindsey

November 23, 2018
Waking up to the tropical island vibes at Casa Coral was the perfect way to start our day . Again, another delicious meal by Tyrone’s day. Today we started with a beautiful fruit spread, and Arabic coffee. We had the morning to sleep in, swing in the hammocks overlooking the ocean and get our online shipping done. Despite being in this slice of paradise. It was still Black Friday, and instead of catching waves, we caught online shopping deals. For lunch we headed to the kioskos where we enjoyed a seafood sampler on the patio over looking the beach. From there we headed up 9 kilometers to the mountains of the national forest, El Yunque. We discovered leafs bigger than our heads, and swam in a pool  at the base of a water fall. As the sun set over the forest, we were reminded of all the amazing community we have built together, and the family we are leaving behind in Puerto Rico. Our last dinner as a group was all the seafood we could eat, at a. A spot right on the water in San Juan. Shrimp, fried fish, fish soup, filet, and more. Feeling full, grateful, and happy.
Peace, love, and Puerto Rico