Note: The following letter was sent to us by one of our VISIONS Guadeloupe Staffers after returning from leading a program.
How is everyone at the VISIONS office? Relieved that the summer volunteer programs for high school students are over? Already gearing up for next year’s teen travel programs? As for me, I moved to Berkeley last week, where I will be working as a Community HealthCorps Health Educator at a local non-profit clinic. As a part of my job training, I attended a youth development session last Friday in San Francisco, and I found myself often thinking of and referring to the teens from Guadeloupe.
I also wanted to pass one expression from this training to you both, called the “Head, Heart, Feet Exercise.” Essentially, a circle is formed and people say one sentence about what they learned (head), how they are feeling (heart) and what they will take away from the experience (feet). This could be an effective closing exercise for VISIONS circles.
On another note, I want to let you both know that I am very interested in participating in another VISIONS trip for next year. I will have the opportunity to provide health consultations in Spanish this year, and am most interested in participating in an immersion trip in a Spanish-speaking country.
Finally, I asked the teens in Guadeloupe to create a form of artistic expression (poem, story, artwork, song, etc.) to express a memory from the trip. Below you will find Angie Tyler’s poem, which I thought might be a nice addition to the VISIONS website.
by Angie Tyler
what is this place?
an island in the Atlantic
without one familiar face.
all kinds of feelings
never fully sure of what
the possibilities will bring.
Some days it will rain
until you are drenched to the bone;
the unbearable heat
will make you wish you were home.
The ants and mosquitoes
might make a nest in your bed,
but about Guadeloupe
there is so much more to be said.
There is the sound of waves crashing,
the picturesque palm trees,
with so many riches,
what more could you need?
Walking down the street
everyone will welcome you,
they are especially impressed
by all the work that we do.
screw down those bolts,
mix up that concrete,
We made all of the finishing touches
to make our projects complete.
Now that we have to go home it’s a bummer.
But there’s no where else on earth
I would have wanted to spend my summer!!