The internet has arrived. Family and friends can finally stop worrying as we are able to report that we are alive and safe in Mauritius. The week of orientation with the three schools we have observed and visited has been very encouraging for the Fellows and we are all excited to get to work and implement our various programs. The kids at all the schools bring plenty of energy to the classroom and we all end each work day with smiles on our faces. But, let me tell you, they definitely wear us out because everyone is usually in their respective beds by about 9 or 10 each evening.
This past week, Vedant has also done a great job introducing us to Mauritian culture and showing us the vast economic disparities in the country. The food has been delicious and the beaches are absolutely gorgeous. It is unfortunate that a majority of the natives do not get to enjoy these luxuries as many of them barely have enough money to support their own families. It has been our goal to be a bright spot in the lives of these children and to create an enjoyable and effective learning environment.
It is hard to pinpoint one favorite aspect of my trip because I sincerely enjoy my time with each school. The performance at Amours Sans Frontiers was incredible and I was super impressed when the kids started to dance. These kids can boogie. I’ve been taking notes, though, so I can be sure to take Toad’s Place by storm in the fall. Look out.
Another moment that is sticking in my mind is my experience with Ecole Fatima. I was involved in an intense basketball game in the schoolyard with the boys and had an absolute blast. When it was time for the girls to take over the court, the guys simply looked at me and said something along the lines of, “You have basketball in America, but we’re the best at football (soccer).” They were right. Although my team was victorious, the students did all the work for me as I just sat back in goal praying that nobody would attempt a shot. Their skills are remarkable and they all have a genuine passion for the game. Hopefully, we can channel this passion into the classroom and the Fellows can assist in preparing them for the real world.
Much more to come…