Thursday, August 5, 2010

Minor Successes

Now that we have internet at home, I might get carried away with blogging every day.

Today I did my first “activity/charla” here in La Esperanza. It wasn’t much. My counterpart asked me to give a short presentation at the monthly meeting of representatives from each of the women’s groups in our organization about the importance of saving in order to motivate them to contribute. I used an activity we learned in training. At the beginning, I gave each person a piece of candy and told them they could eat it or save it. At the end of the meeting, I asked if anyone still had their piece left, and if they did, I gave them an extra candy. The point of this is to show that if you can save your candy for a little while and not eat it, your candy pile will grow. This is of course supposed to mimic what would happen if you saved your money and put it in the bank to gain interest or to grow as you save more and more each month.

I was a little skeptical that either none of the women would eat the candy, or that all of them would, and then the lesson wouldn’t be as apparent. But it worked perfectly and the women loved it! A few women saved their dulces and were rewarded with an extra piece. I explained to them more about the importance of saving for emergencies and large purchases and that they could avoid interest and prestamos (loans) by saving up for something rather than borrowing money. I also told them to repeat the activity with each of their groups to spread the message. I think at least some of them got the message and the activity garnered me a round of enthusiastic applause.

While I guess this technically isn’t the first ‘work’ I’ve done, it’s the first presentation/activity that I led and I’m happy to say that it was a success in its own small way.

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