© 2010 Heather Bessette

Saludos desde el Bajo Lempa!

First and foremost, Team Monterey El Salvador wishes you all a very happy feliz año nuevo!  We write you a big “saludo” from Ciudad Romero in El Salvador! We are happy to report that we have arrived safe and sound and were greeted by long-term volunteer Jillian Baker and David Marroquín of Asociación Mangle at Comalapa International Airport.

Team Monterey El Salvador 2010 officially started on saturday morning, January 2nd at the Digital Media Commons as we all tuned in for a Skype call with Team Monterey and IEP graduate Nathan Weller.  Nathan is now a Program and Policy director for the Foundation for Self Sufficiency of Central America.  We discussed the principles of Participatory Action Research as a means of challenging us to think about how to make our recommendations as meaningful as possible for our partners here in country.  Andrew Volkman and Rocio Corona are seen below working on project details before packing up and heading to the airport.

Picture 2Picture 1

We had some great flying weather and were greeted with the following vista on the first leg of our trip from San Jose to Los Angeles International.  Below is a beautiful sunset and the Monterey Peninsula.

Our flight from Los Angeles to San Salvador departed at midnight which timed our arrival in El Salvador for another beautiful scene.  The images below depict the beautiful aesthetics of our morning descent.

Our flight touched down at 6:30 a.m. local time and we were all eager to make it to Ciudad Romero to see old familiar faces and get our projects off the ground.  Tomorrow marks the first working day after the holiday season for Asociación Mangle and will serve as the introductory meeting in which we will introduce new team members and have the opportunity to talk about our individual projects in more details with our “responsables” or program directors.  Below is a photo of Team Monterey 2010 being led around Ciudad Romero as we learned about the history behind the community in which we are staying.  This is only our first day here, stay posted for updates, photos and more as we were excited to learn that the dormitory now features wireless internet!  Hasta muy pronto!

Jillian Baker meets us at the Comalapa International Airport

Jillian Baker meets us at the Comalapa International Airport

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