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Dordt AMOR team works in Dominican Republic

Twelve Dordt College students and a pair of staff members used a week of their semester break to serve in the Dominican Republic as mission workers on an AMOR (A Mission OutReach) team.

“During the first day of work, we started building the wall,” recalls Jessica Roorda. “Most of us had never done this before. I will always remember how the Dominicans working with us stopped, and starting laughing so hard at us. The wall was not straight at all! It took us a while to get it a little straighter, but by the end of the week we had it down pat.”

The newly constructed wall provides a safety barrier between traffic, pedestrians and the school children, and the removal of another wall allows children to walk between two school buildings without going into the street to get around it. The new cafeteria at the school makes the former kitchen available for use as a teacher’s work area, while the basketball court meets new government standards for schools. “Some of these children would have no education, were it not for the work of World Wide Christian Schools and the many workers from Canada and the U.S.,” said Karen Rynders a Dordt College employee. There are now 5,000 children in twenty-one schools in the Dominican Republic. At the school where the team worked, one group of children attended from 8 -12 a.m. and a second group attended from 2-6 p.m., allowing the school to teach more students, and giving a break during the hottest part of the day.

The Dominicans’ simpler life style impressed Brittany Rook, who added, “People weren’t worried about having their car scratched by someone trying to squeeze by. Kids didn’t beg for brand new toys; they found garbage on the side of the roads, and invented a way to make it fun. People were so willing to love and have a good time.”

“The main thing I noticed while in the D.R. was how happy the people there are. They are living in poverty with scarce material possessions, yet they are happy, and they love their country. I wish Americans were more like that,” reflected Jen McCreery.