Want a feel for the life of a field volunteer with Esperanza? Check out this post from my colleague Nick Hamilton, over at the Kiva blog. Hailing from England, Nick is volunteering for a few months as a Kiva Fellow in the DR & Haiti, sharing the stories of various Esperanza loan clients online at Kiva.org. We met a few weeks ago at Esperanza’s main office and he’s been working at the San Pedro branch ever since.
San Pedro is a loud, throbbing, dusty market town thronged with cluttered stalls and swerving, reckless traffic. The stuffy daytime air is dominated by the raucous buzz of rattling motorbikes while barking dogs and the odd confused cockerel assume control at night. A shortage of running water is a real issue and mass electricity outages occur on a daily basis. In almost 2 weeks in San Pedro I haven’t encountered a single tourist. I don’t think that’s likely to change. This, for me, is the real Dominican Republic.
Enjoy, and happy Thanksgiving-Eve travels to all back home!