Sunday, October 31, 2010

Volunteers Motivate the Children!

The two volunteers from Barcelona, María José and Eli, finished their poster project for the orphanage! On a poster, they wrote a few rules, disguised as good habits for hygiene and cleanliness, in an interesting and creative way to attract the children! They wrote these rules in English and Hindi (tracing the Hindi that I wrote on the poster for them in pencil), so that the children can understand the rules, and even learn English from the poster when they get older! The rules translated into English also help the volunteers familiarize themselves with the rules and routine of the orphanage. María José and Eli also created a poster with a picture of each child, to help any new volunteers get to know the children, and to show the children how special each one of them is. When the children saw the posters with their photos, they were all enraptured to see how much we all cared about each of these special children. The children also helped mount the posters to the wall, and they were even helping some new volunteers this morning by showing them their routines on the poster! Shyann, one of our volunteers, with María José and Eli, also created some advice for the volunteers to keep in the volunteers' room for helping the orphanage and the children. We will never forget all of the help that these volunteers have given us! Last night, the orphans were very sad to see the volunteers leave, but they were more happy to have spent their time with them, and we will be organizing Skype meetings between them and the volunteers, along with keeping in touch my emails. The volunteers, on their way out, promised to all of the children that they will be back next year, and for even longer than this trip!

This morning, the rest of our volunteers went to the park with the children from the orphanage for some exercises. They helped the children shower when they returned, made sure that each child ate their breakfast, and finally went back to the host family home for lunch. The children don't seem to be too upset that the other volunteers left, though they do miss their good friends from Barcelona and the US. They have the comfort of each other, their caretakers, and the current volunteers with us.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Teaching English in Delhi NCR and Diwali Preparations

Last night was one of our volunteer's final night with us, after a one-week stay at the volunteering program here in Delhi NCR. The children at the orphanage were sad to see her go, but this volunteer has really helped move things in a positive direction for the children, and they will never forget the impact that she has made here, in such little time! We are certain we will see her here again volunteering with us! Here is a photo of one of the two cupboards that she donated, as it is all settled in the orphanage now!

This morning, three volunteers went to Amritsar to see the Golden Temple for the weekend, as our two volunteers from Barcelona stayed back to help out at the orphanage on their last day with us. They went at 7:00AM to the orphanage, to take the children to the park and exercise with the children. After exercising and having breakfasts, our newest volunteer, also from Barcelona, with another volunteer, from the US, went to the orphanage to teach the children English homework. The smallest children practiced writing the alphabet, mostly only uppercase letters, and one child, who is a bit older, practiced dictation, writing words that the volunteer reads aloud (like "Book, look, took, rice, nice, fight, light, log, hot, mop," etc.). After finishing their work, the children enjoyed a snack, and began to color some "Looney Tunes" coloring book pages, which the children loved! Two of the eldest children, Rajat and Muskan, were painting their "Diya" for Diwali! These clay "Diya," or lamps, are decorated to celebrate the return of Lord Ram to his home in Ayodhya, after having defeated Ravan, the symbol of evil in Hinduism. When the Diya are ready we will post some pictures!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Orphanage Project

Here is a photo taken yesterday morning, as the children had gotten ready for school and the volunteers were ready to walk with the children to school. The volunteers wake up around 6AM every morning to help wake up the children, have breakfast with them, and get them ready for school. After walking with the children to school, they come back to the host family to spend time with the family and then rest. In the afternoon, they pick up the children from classes, and take them to the park to play around and exercise. Then, when they return from the park, they separately finish their homework, with the volunteers' help whenever they wish. The oldest child, Rajat (second row, second child from the left), really loves one of our volunteers from the US, and he has dedicated the rest of his time here to spending time with Rajat, as he desperately seeks good male role models, like my husband and this volunteer. Yesterday he spent a few hours with Rajat practicing English and dictations, which immediately excited Rajat and made him enthusiastic about wanting to study! Today he will spend a lot of time with Rajat as well, from 4PM, to continue his studies and spend time with him.

The other volunteers, especially those from the US, Canada, and from Barcelona, have taken an interest in creating a few posters for the orphanage. They have spent the entire evening writing meticulous descriptions of each child, to help the volunteers get to know the children, along with descriptive details for the children's chores and the volunteers' responsibilities. They have worked on the text for these posters in both English and Spanish, to help the volunteers who come from many different countries. They have also made a list of rules, written in both English and Hindi, that will help the children gain more discipline and practice their English understanding as well. Today they will complete the posters, and hopefully they will be able to put them in the orphanage today! As soon as they are ready I will take the pictures and post them here!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Delhi Sightseeing

Here is a picture from a volunteer's trip to Shimla!

The volunteers went to the major shopping district in Delhi yesterday after having worked at the orphanage! The volunteers were washing all of the children's hair with medical shampoo, as one of the children had lice. It was nice to see that the volunteers were very dedicated to helping the children, and they are maintaining strict hygiene habits to ensure that the lice doesn't spread or come back to the children. Afterwards, the four volunteers (two from Barcelona and two from the US) went to see the famous Lotus Temple in Delhi, which they all really enjoyed. They then enjoyed a delicious North Indian restaurant nearby India Gate. The foreigners then went to Connaught Place, where one volunteer bought a beautiful emerald bracelet and two pearl necklaces, in the underground Palika Bazar. After finishing their shopping in the bazar, they resurfaced to reach the famous Janpath Market in Connaught Place, where they spent three hours in one Kashmiri Store! The volunteers bought many pashminas, mostly for gifts, and learned a lot about the tricks of the trade in the Kashmiri goods' industry. Finally, the volunteers had some comical encounters with the local people selling goods on the street: One volunteer bought two runners from, what seemed to be the same shop, but in reality the shop had two different owners, and the volunteer had accidentally purchased an item from the wrong vendor! Later, as the volunteers were walking away, the true vendor asked them to go back to the shop, where they finally settled the confusion and mix-up with the other store owner. They described that the local people were not upset, as they understood that accidents can happen. Later, one of the volunteers decided that she would like to have another bag, so that she could have more space to store her things while she is traveling around India. The four of them found a man who sells such bags, and he showed them a bag, with wheels, that was also a backpack, and also a sport bag, even with a lock on it! His starting price was fairly high (950 Rupees), but the interested shopper was thinking to purchase it. The shopkeeper thought he would make a great deal, so he started putting everyone's shopping bags, with newly bought pashminas in them, inside of the bag that he wanted to sell. When the volunteer noticed how heavy the bag was getting, she decided that she didn't even want a bag, because then she would have to lug the bag with her everywhere, and it would tempt her to buy more souvenirs than she needs. As they were walking away, he was shouting at them to buy it for 600 Rupees: Now, the volunteer thought, "No, it's still too expensive, and I don't even want the bag!" Well, the shopkeeper saw them walking away, chased after them, and pleaded to them to buy the bag at a price of 300 Rupees! Now, the volunteers were getting pretty annoyed, and even some local people were trying to tell the guy to drop the matter. Finally, one of the volunteers, who speaks Hindi, explained to the guy that it was not an issue about money, she just didn't have any interest in having the bag at all. As he was walking away, the shopkeeper grabbed his arm forcefully, and begged that she buy the bag for 250 Rupees. Aggravated with the shopkeeper, the volunteer explained that even if the bag were free she wouldn't take it! The shopkeeper must not have believed him, because now he said, "Ask her, if it is free, will she take it?" So, the volunteer, chuckling, asked her if she wanted the bag for free from afar. She gave a very loud response of "NO!" and frowned at the shopkeeper, who was flabbergasted that she truly wouldn't even take the bag for free! Finally, he must have gotten the point, and he left. The volunteers came home later, told me and my husband the story, and one of them said "If anyone ever needs a bag I know where I can get them a free one!" and we all burst into laughter.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Cows in Haryana and Volunteers Plans

Here is another picture from Jhajjar, in Haryana, when one of our volunteers went with his host family to visit extended family in Jhajjar. The picture was taken at Gurukul, where there is a cow shed. Each cow produces between twenty to forty liters of milk each day!

Last night the volunteers in one host family home enjoyed a nice Karva Chauth, with a traditional Hindu Pooja (prayer ceremony) to conclude the fast and holiday. At the orphanage, the children have been doing very well, and they enjoyed watching  the Disney movie,"The Aristocats" on TV, in Hindi, along with a new Bollywood film, Dabangg, which recently premiered in theaters in India. Today, the volunteers awoke early and helped the children with their chores. After making breakfast, the volunteers walked the children to school, and came back to discuss with the host family ways to improve the orphanage. Today the volunteers decided that they will work on some rules for the orphanage to help maintain as routine a schedule for the children as possible. They will get a large poster, markers, and decorations to design these rules in a kid-friendly approach, so that they can associate the rules with things that they enjoy, such as attractive colors or entertaining designs. The rules will be written in both English and Hindi as well, which should be interesting for the volunteers to learn how to say new phrases in Hindi too! Since the children are in school now, the volunteers are on their way to the major shopping district in Delhi, as it is one of their last days here in India. Hopefully they will make some great purchases and find some great sales during the holiday season, especially as Diwali approaches!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Karva Chauth Holiday and Traveling in Rural Haryana

We have a new addition to our orphanage as of last night! This child, Sonu, has adjusted instantly to the orphanage, quickly established relationships with the other children, and has even begun his first day of classes today without any breaks in routine as if he had been living in the orphanage for several months or years! His mother had passed away several years ago, and his father is terminally ill with Tuberculosis, so we have given him the best we can offer as a new resident in our home. We are very thrilled to be able to offer such an opportunity to a truly needy individual!

In the photo above, one of the volunteers visited a small town in Haryana called Jhajjar. He went with his host family to visit family in Jhajjar, and they went together to Gurukul, a place where students learn Hindi, Sanskrit, and about Hinduism, almost completely distant and separate from the rest of civilization. The first picture is at the students' meditation area, and the second picture was taken as the children were washing their clothes outside. The volunteer really enjoyed his trip with the host family and visiting a new city in Haryana!

Today, the volunteers are celebrating the holiday of Karva Chauth! Some volunteers will be going to Hindu temples in Delhi NCR with their host families, while others will spend the day with the host families to observe the traditions that they will observe this evening. The holiday celebrates marriage, and married women observe a fast from the morning upon seeing the moon, when the husband feeds his wife her first morsel of food for the day. This Hindu holiday honors the sacred bond of marriage and demonstrates the dedication that family members have for one another. We would like to wish all married women around the world a "Karva Chauth kee Shubhkaamnayein," or Happy Karva Chauth!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Donations to the Orphanage in Delhi NCR!

Yesterday, one of our special guests had decided to purchase some cupboards for the children in the orphanage! Her donation was really thoughtful and generous, and the children were extremely happy to start organizing their personal things in their first private area for themselves! In the photo, you can see our volunteer Shyann, in both photos, with the cupboards she donated to the orphanage and some of her new friends, the other volunteers! While the children were at the nearby park, where they were on Ferris Wheel rides, the cupboards were delivered to their home. The children came back from a wonderful Sunday evening in the park, filled with snacks, a full course dinner, and some ice cream, only to return home to the surprise of the new cupboards in the home! Our orphanage is looking more and more like a cozy home, and we can see that the quality of the children's routine lives is not being compromised, though they are orphaned children.

Today, three of our medical volunteers went to a local general hospital in Delhi NCR, which focuses on pediatrics and gynecology. Two of our volunteers from Barcelona, who are trained nurses, have gone to another hospital, which specializes in surgical procedures and gynecology: They have given the host family and doctors at the hospital advice for improving the quality of care they provide to their patients, and they are constantly planning ways to offer their services or any extra supplies to these hospitals in need. Another volunteer, who also happens to be a trained nurse from the UK, went to a charitable hospital, where she will assist the hospital, since they have an overwhelming number of patients and few health care providers who work for this charity. Other volunteers have gone to street children projects to teach children English and Computing. The projects have been running very smoothly and have greatly been benefitting from the help of the volunteers!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

About our Orphanage

In the photo, my daughter (left) is with one of the orphans, Muskan (right).

I wanted to thank the current volunteers who have been here, during this pivotal time for Aim Abroad. The volunteers have been extremely helpful at our orphanage, making sure the children are in great hands and teaching them with dedication. We can see that the children are learning much more English, and have been establishing healthier relationships amongst each other and with adult figures as well. Our volunteers have been cooking, cleaning, helping the children with all of their chores, taking them to school each day, playing with them in the parks, and even taking out the children for excursions. When we see volunteers with such commitment such as Elisabeth, María José, Silvia, Elisabeth (all from Barcelona), and Shyann (from the US), it really inspires the children to make something really special out of their lives and overcome their unfortunate circumstances. I am very proud to be involved in this cause of helping the needy!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Haryana Games in Delhi NCR!

Here is a photo from our fiesta, that we celebrated a few days ago! Two of the girls from Spain had gone traveling to Amritsar, and the other two girls, who are nurses from Barcelona, went to Agra this morning. In the evening, the volunteers in Agra will travel to Jaipur, where they will meet with their new friends, the other two volunteers from Spain who went to Amritsar! In other news, one of our new volunteers from the US has gone to the charitable school in Delhi NCR to teach the children English. She awoke early in the morning and helped the children at an orphanage get ready for school in the morning. After teaching the children at the school, she will go back to the host family home and help the children at the orphanage when they return from school. We also have an exciting event occurring in our area of Delhi NCR! The Haryana Games are being hosted in this community: there will be plenty of athletes from all of Haryana competing in these games, some of whom may be considered for representing India in the approaching Asia Games and Olympics in 2012. We are very proud of our athletes from the state of Haryana, and we wish them the best of luck in their efforts! 

Thursday, October 21, 2010

About our Fiesta and the Volunteering Projects

Yesterday our fiesta was a success! The four girls from Spain prepared a "tortilla," or Spanish omelette, and a Spanish salad with mixed vegetables, vinegar, and olive oil. The girls also brought butterscotch and chocolate ice cream for everyone, and the children enjoyed trying some international cuisine, along with the host family and other volunteers! The volunteers went to the mall afterwards, after taking their first rickshaw ride in India: They were interested in the adventure and had an enjoyable time searching for a cheap and fair rickshaw, which they did eventually find! In the evening, the host family and the volunteers enjoyed a large batch of momos (similar to what volunteers call "dumplings" in the West). Today, they will enjoy a Bollywood film and then they will head out to central Delhi, where two will depart for Amritsar and continue with their travels around India, and the other two will enjoy the sights and shop in the tourism sector of Delhi. Other volunteers, two from England and one from Australia, have gone to volunteer in hospitals around Delhi NCR: Three are volunteering in the pediatric hospital, where they will spend time in the nursery with the infants and in the Out-Patient Department. Another volunteer, from the US, has gone to a hospital that specializes in gynecology and pediatrics: She has been offered the opportunity to assist with deliveries and other surgeries at the hospital, so we are optimistic that she will have a memorable experience. Finally, I have added two more pictures from one of the volunteer's expeditions in Shimla and Solan: This was the view from nearby his hotel!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Snake's Closeup and Spanish Volunteers Currently with us!

I have posted another photo from the volunteer's encounter with a friendly, and trained, snake up in Shimla! His friend was holding the snake's head in his palm! Also, the other picture is a view from the top of the mountain in the Himalayas nearby where the volunteer saw the snake! In other news, two volunteers from Barcelona, both qualified nurses, have gone to a hospital in Delhi NCR where they will observe a lacroscopic hernia surgery, and, if there is time, they will also observe a spinal surgery in the afternoon. Afterwards, they have plans to prepare some traditional Spanish dishes for a mini-"fiesta", with two other volunteers from Spain, for their host family, who is very excited to try the international cuisine! After lunch, the four girls will go to see a Bollywood film, Anjaana Anjaani ("Strangers"), at a local theater. The two other girls from Spain woke up early in the morning to go to an orphanage and help the children with their chores and to spend time with the children before school begins. They have been helping at the orphanage every day this week, and we will really miss having them here with us, as they will leave tomorrow afternoon to travel around India before heading to Madrid.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

More of Shimla and the Commonwealth Games Results!

Before beginning today, I wanted to post another picture from our volunteers' travel in Shimla! The photo was taken in Solan, where he booked the hotel. This was the view from the bedroom in the hotel. This morning, volunteers have gone to medical projects, orphanage projects, and four from Spain have left to visit central Delhi for sightseeing at Redfort, Chandni Chowk, Jamma Masjid, Connaught Place, India Gate, and Raj Ghat, and they will return back to the host family this evening.

Today, I would like to comment on the Commonwealth Games, because this has had such a huge impact on our city here in Delhi NCR. The games went very well after the city made many efforts to make the preparations for the games necessary. The infrastructure has greatly improved, as the metro is expanding to other areas in Delhi NCR to reach suburbs of Delhi that were only accessible by roads earlier. Many of our volunteers went to watch the Commonwealth Games as well, and it was interesting to hear their feedback about being a part of such a major event and milestone occasion. India came in second place, with 38 gold medals, and we are very proud to be Indian during this important function and the holiday season here in India. "Jai Hind!" (Long live India!)

Monday, October 18, 2010

Volunteer work in Delhi and Festival Season in India!

Our volunteers with Aim Abroad have gone to a variety of projects this morning! Two of our volunteers from Spain woke up early to help the children at an orphanage with all of their chores and to get ready for school. They learned how to cook traditional Indian meals with the caretaker at the orphanage, and enjoyed the meal shortly afterwards. The girls came back to the host family home for a short break, and will head back to the orphanage once the children return home from school. Two other volunteers from Spain, who are nurses in Barcelona, have gone to a local hospital in Delhi NCR, where they will assist the hospital in any manner possible, and possibly observe some surgeries today too, with another volunteer from the US. Three other volunteers, one from Denmark, one from Canada, and one from the US, went to a school for street children, which is located within a slum area, where the volunteers will focus on teaching English and Math to the children. Finally, another volunteer from Canada went to an all-girls' orphanage, where she will play with the children and help improve their communication. Here in the photos, one volunteer went with the orphans to observe the festival of Dusserha, where an effigy of Ravan (built by neighborhood children!) was burned! All of the children were very excited, and truly had a special evening with the volunteer and each other! 

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Festival Season in India with Volunteers!

Aim Abroad would like to wish everyone a "Dussehra kee shubhkamnaayein" on this special day! The volunteers in one host family home have woken up and showered early for a special pooja (prayer service) for this holiday, during which we remember that on this day Lord Ram killed Ravan, who represents all evil in Hinduism. The event will be followed by traditional customs that are practiced on this day, and in the evening the volunteers will observe a unique event in which the death of Ravan is recreated in many places all around India today! Here is a picture taken at the event when four medical volunteers observed the holiday last year! At first, the effigies of Ravan, his brother Kumbhkarna, and his son Meghnad are built; at sundown, the reenactment of their deaths is shown, as Ram pierces Ravan with an arrow, and the effigies are burnt to signify their deaths. It is always entertaining for the volunteers to observe this custom each Dussehra!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Volunteering and Travels to Shimla

This week at Aim Abroad the projects have been going very well! One volunteer, from the US, came with funds that she had raised for donations to the volunteering projects! She went this week with one of the teachers from the school to purchase book-bags for each child at the school (there are about 250 children who study at this school). Other volunteers have been going to the school for disabled children, where they have been spending time with these children during the festival season of Navratra. Two other volunteers have been visiting an all-girls' orphanage during this festival season as well, where they have been spending time playing with the children and helping them with their English communication. Another pair of volunteers has been volunteering at a local hospital here in Delhi NCR, where they have been learning from a gynecologist and a pediatrician in particular, along with other practices in the hospital. One of our volunteers from the US, who has been here since June, had gone to visit Shimla for a short vacation, with a very close friend. He had a wonderful stay in the Himalayas, and he has given us some photos to post on the blog! Here is a photo taken at Kufri, a popular tourist destination in Shimla.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fir Milenge, or "See you later" in Hindi!

Just a few hours ago, one of our volunteers have left after her three-week volunteer work with Aim Abroad. She was very sad to leave this country, her new family, and all of the volunteers that she met, that she was crying on her way to the airport. The other volunteers went with her to the airport to spend time with her, as they grew very close during her volunteering period with them. It is always very sad for us to say goodbye as well, so instead we always say "Fir milenge" (we'll meet again)!

Otherwise, today a few volunteers went to a school for disabled children, where they spent time with the orphans who live at the school: the school has limited accommodations for the students; however, some students have been disowned by families, and they remain at the school, with their new families. In the photo you can see one of our volunteers, Sonia, from Barcelona, Spain, while she visits this school for disabled children. A few other volunteers went to a different school for disabled children as well in another area in Delhi NCR, while two volunteers went to their new volunteering placement in an all-girls' orphanage. This evening, five of the volunteers went with one of the host family's children to the local market in Delhi NCR, where they bought the children some new clothes and ice cream! One of the children, who is nine years old, helped a volunteer get alterations to her new saree as well, which she bought here in India! It was a nice day, though bittersweet to say "farewell" to one of our volunteers.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Navratra kee Shubhkamnaayein!

Some volunteers with Aim Abroad went to central Delhi today for an afternoon of sightseeing and shopping, while others are enjoying observing the Commonwealth Games! The volunteers wanted to go to Connaught Place, the major shopping district in Delhi, but today at Connaught Place the shops will be closed because of a cycle race, for the Commonwealth Games, scheduled throughout the neighborhood. Instead, the volunteers will spend some time at Chandni Chowk and perhaps Sarojni markets, both very affordable markets in Delhi where high quality items can be found. 

Otherwise, Aim Abroad would like to welcome everybody a "Navratra kee shubhkamnaayein!" ("Happy Navratri"). This holiday, which started yesterday, lasts for nine days, during which many Hindus fast during hours of sunlight, to commemorate the same fast, which the people of Ayodhya observed. Today, one of our volunteers is attending a special event at a friend's home, where the Ramayan, a Hindu sacred text, will be read aloud, from start to finish, within a twenty four hour period. The book must be read quite speedily, as it is about 2000 pages in length! Though the even will run for twenty four hours, people will stop by and spend time with others while the Ramayan is being read aloud. Two or three main readers will switch back and forth with the readings. The volunteer is quite excited about this event, as he knows little about the holiday and the Ramayan!

Friday, October 8, 2010

The volunteers with Aim Abroad went to see the Commonwealth Games in India today! They went to the central area in Delhi where they can observe the games, and also see some sites in Delhi and shop in the neighborhood. They will come back on Sunday evening, I am sure with plenty of stories to share with the host family. Two other volunteers went to the street children project, where they will teach the children, focusing on English and computing classes. One of the volunteers has expressed interest in donating some supplies for the street children school, so we are very excited to help her with her mission! We are aware that the school is in need of some new uniforms, so perhaps with her donations we can purchase several dozens of uniforms for the children. As she decides how she would like to make the donation, I will be certain to write about it! In the photo, you can see more of the children who study at this school!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Current Volunteers with Aim Abroad

Today, two of the volunteers with Aim Abroad went to the hospital to continue their volunteer work in India. At the hospital, they will work mostly with a gynecologist and a pediatrician, but they will also visit some of the other branches in the hospital to gain more exposure to medical practices and the health care system here in India. Three other volunteers went to the school for street children, where they have been focusing on English teaching, and they have been specifically interested in giving the children care and attention, which they cannot find at their homes. After they finish their projects, the volunteers will go back to the host family home for lunch, and possibly watch the new Bollywood film, Anjaana Anjaani (meaning Strangers). Last night, a few volunteers went to the mall with the orphans at one of the orphanages, where the children rode their first escalator, went to the cinema for the first time ever, and saw the movie Dabangg (meaning Fearless), which both the volunteers and orphans enjoyed. Afterwards, the children went to McDonald's for the first time, which they did not enjoy as much as the volunteers hoped! But, even so, the children still enjoyed their experience with the volunteers. In the photo, you can see some of the orphans with my children and a family friend at the orphanage. This weekend, a few volunteers are contemplating going to the Commonwealth Games to watch some of the events, particularly Gymnastics and Swimming. The event should be exciting!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Commonwealth Games and Dengue Fever

Yesterday the Commonwealth Games opened for the first time in Delhi, India! We are very proud to host this event, and we are looking forward to the positive effect that the Commonwealth Games will have on our country, especially for Delhi NCR. With the influx of foreigners all around Delhi NCR, we are looking forward to the possibility of foreigners taking an interest in helping local organizations in need! If not, at least we'll enjoy the event at our home!

Today, one volunteer went to the school for underprivileged children, where she spent the day teaching them English. She mentioned that there was one child who had a confirmed case of Dengue Fever, and two other children who have symptoms, but there is no confirmation that they have contracted Dengue Fever. I feel like it would be an appropriate time to discuss some facts about Dengue Fever.

Mosquitoes that carry dengue usually bite during sunrise and sunset, but they also bite any time during the day, usually indoors, in shady areas, or when the weather is cloudy. This is interesting, as other mosquitoes, that do not carry dengue, usually bite at night. Symptoms of Dengue Fever can be minimal, such as headache, nausea, loss of appetite, and fever, while severe symptoms include severe fluid loss and hemorrhaging. Symptoms of Dengue Fever usually last between two and seven days. Currently, there is no approved vaccine for the virus. Typically, oral rehydration therapy is best for Dengue, and, while aspirin should be avoided, paracetamol and acetominophen. 

After looking at these facts, it appears that the child who was bitten by a dengue-carrying mosquito was unlikely bitten at the school. This school is run outdoors, and for the past week it has been very sunny, a setting which the dengue-carrying mosquito does not prefer (In the picture, you can clearly see that the park wouldn't be damp after a week of sunshine. The photo was taken by one of our volunteers from Barcelona, Tania, when she volunteered with Aim Abroad on September 1st). From the information, it appears that the child is not contagious, as the disease is spread only by these mosquitoes, so there should be no concern about the health of the other children. It is likely that the child was infected with Dengue in his home, as the area where he lives is most likely a very damp area, like many of the slum homes, where hygiene conditions are very poor. Though the disease is a very serious concern, it is a relief to know that the children are most likely not being exposed to Dengue at their school. We hope that the child, and the other children, who potentially have Dengue Fever, will have a speedy recovery.