Final Thoughts

As a way to wrap up what’s been one crazy, incredible week we wanted to share a few of our individual thoughts and feelings. It’s always hard to condense such a wide range experience into a sentence or paragraph, but here are some of our lasting impressions:

“Being able to bring camp to another country was an amazing experience. I was able to make connections with the campers and it is such an amazing feeling to have made such an impact on a child’s life This trip has made me appreciate all of the things that I have and how lucky I am to have been able to be a part of this amazing trip.” – Marlee Georger

“Big thank you to DREAM and everyone who made this life-changing experience possible. Working with these kids and seeing the smiles on their faces made me so happy. I never thought it could be possible to grow such strong bonds in such little time.” – Ben Putzer

“A common theme of this trip: falling. Falling on our butts, but also falling in love with this place and the campers. We came here to teach and lead, but I ended up learning more that I could’ve asked for. About always giving my all, even in the extreme heat, and making a fun time out of everything. Not only did I see some of the most magnificent things on excursions, but I also saw a gravel pit turn into a Color War full of smiles and laughter. Then during the goodbye party I was blindsided. I though of all the places I’ve been for the last time, and then the school in Sabaneta was added to that list. I also thought of all the people I’ve seen for the last time, and all of the inspiring campers entered that list too. Goodbyes were hard. I’d become attached to everything this trip had to offer. In the end, I just have to repeat to myself: ‘Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.'” -Jeremy Reissman

“Not only did this trip help me make connections with campers and learn how to be a counselor, but it helped me bond with a group of kids I’ve known since I was 8. That was the thing I was most thankful for, because boarding flight 937 out of JFK I was with people in my division. But sitting in the common room on the last night, I’m with 30 best friends.”

“This trip really opened my eyes to the true meaning of being a teacher. I learned that being vocal and outgoing makes all the difference. When I saw the kids every day I was motivated to make their summer the best and most memorable.” – Josh Weinstein

“Nothing is better than seeing these kids smile at the sight of you.” -Noah Levine

“The trip was filled with things I never thought I would do or see. It’s amazing to have been a part of this experience.” – Emma Georger

“I am not a big fan of change, so leaving the place I had been living for 4 weeks and traveling to a whole new place was challenging at first, but that quickly faded. This trip was truly incredible and I am so happy I was able to meet all the amazing kids at the camp. I will definitely remember and treasure the memories I made forever.”- Marissa Stone

“You don’t have to speak the same language to listen. But you do need to care about the person speaking to understand.” – Melanie Krieger

“Seeing the huge smiles on the children’s faces made me forget about the meaningless stresses that we have at home and at camp. It also made me appreciate all of the things that I am privileged to have, and realize that nothing at camp/ home matters as much as it seems.” – Matt Cohen

“This trip not only helped me step beyond my comfort zone but also allowed me to make strong, everlasting bonds with campers eager to learn and make connections.” -Lauren Rosh

“Great trip with great friends… A DReam come true.” – Mack Madorsky

“…This past trip was both an incredible and eye-opening experience packed into 9 busy days. Although each CIT had different expectations going into the trip, we believe that it impacted us all positively. We arrived at camp on day 1 – the majority of us not speaking a word of Spanish – and easily managed to form relationships with campers. The visible effect of a smile, high-five, or ‘cómo estás?’ made us just as happy as the kids. Despite coming in believing we were doing a service for these campers, we quickly realized we were getting as much out of camp as they were. From dealing with the language barrier, to complex living situations, we believe we learned a lot of what it means to be a good counselor. The most difficult part of the trip was easily the goodbyes. Although the trip was short, we know we will not forget it and neither will our campers. Today we were told be a tearful camper named Lysandra, ‘I will love and remember you even when I’m 100 years old. You’re my best friends forever.’ We are incredibly grateful that we could share this experience with one another. Adios.” – Cozy Blumenfeld & Hannah Schor

“3 words non-Spanish speakers need to know are aquí, una fila, and no comprendo.” – Rachel Trichon

“Don’t be nervous to interact with kids because your Spanish is limited or not perfect.”

“My biggest takeaway from this trip that the kids taught me was that your don’t need materials or wealth to be happy. They don’t have much, but just having a conversation or playing a game of catch with us made their days. They created memories by creating relationships.” – Matt Stuttman

“This was by far the best trip I have ever been on. Not only was it eye-opening and unique, it was purely an extraordinary experience. I wouldn’t want to change anything.” -Sarah Feldman

 

 

 

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