Bringing the world to Cape Verde’s children
Friday, 18 November 2016 :: Cape VerdeInstead of waiting for the children of Mindelo, Cape Verde to come to Logos Hope, teams of volunteers went out into the city to connect with kids at a children’s care centre and a public park.
At a centre for youth with mental and physical disabilities, crewmembers sang songs and played with the children. Viviann Yang (Central Asia) really enjoyed the opportunity, saying, “It brought the teacher side out of me to just make sure that every child got to participate. I couldn’t communicate with one little boy, so I just sang to him and he calmed down.”
When a crewmember asked why the staff had welcomed a visit from the ship’s volunteers, Janine Rodrigues, coordinator of the centre, said, “These children only know two things: their home and this centre where they come every day. They know nothing else of the world. When we heard about Logos Hope’s international crew, we wanted to bring the world to the children.”
Another group of crewmembers walked to a playground near the ship’s berth to get involved in some activities with the youth. When the volunteers arrived, they were disappointed to find only a few kids. Several team members began inflating balloons while others set up face-painting stations. All it took was one young girl approaching Tanya Ying (Thailand) for a balloon and running off to show it to her friend to draw attention to the team. Within 15 minutes, a crowd of more than 50 kids and parents had gathered to take part in the activities.
A teenage girl approached a crewmember to show her pictures from her visit to Logos Hope, including shots of the ship’s mascot, El Capitano, and sequences from the story of the prodigal son from the Journey of Life exhibit. The volunteer asked the girl what she thought of the story and what impact it had on her personally. “It is life’s reality,” said the teen in broken English. “It was very emotional!”
Crewmembers were thankful for the opportunities to connect with Mindelo’s youth and hope the exposure to different cultures will positively influence the lives of the community’s younger generation.