A group of Farmington Public Schools (FPS) International Baccalaureate (IB) students recently completed the program’s sixth service learning trip to the Dominican Republic.
The trip is open to 9th-12th graders who are enrolled in an IB course or are on track for an IB Diploma.
Service learning trips provide IB students with immersion in the Latin American culture and language. They volunteer and spend some time working through cross-cultural lessons, while being tourists in another country.
FPS students volunteered through the Dominican Republic Education and Mentoring (DREAM) Project, a supplement to the country’s school system that extends from early childhood through young adulthood. DREAM empowers at-risk children and youth to create a better future for themselves and their families.
Over the years, the IB Programme has partnered with the (DREAM) Project to paint murals, build bookcases, create a new garden, and transform a garbage dump into a baseball field, which is now known as Harrison’s Field of Dreams. Additionally, IB students have collected and donated more than 7,000 pounds of school supplies, athletic equipment, food, and clothing to impoverished Dominican families.
“The desire to learn and the compassion displayed by the kids was something I had never experienced before,” said Phoebe Block, 2018 Harrison High School graduate. “Even though I went to the Dominican Republic expecting to give my time, knowledge, and resources, I got back more than I could ever ask for.”
“They showed me that I shouldn’t take a day for granted,” said Lydia Ferguson, a junior at Harrison High School. “They showed me that the littlest things can make another person’s day. They reminded me that we are more alike than different. We’re all human. Love and compassion don’t see race, gender, or age.”
Learn more about DREAM at dominicandream.org.
– Press release