Today by the numbers:
47 kids, ages 11-18
6 hours (10am departure, ~4pm arrival)
12 mega buckets of KFC chicken for lunch
Innumerable amount of napkins
The Parque de la Imaginación is located about an hour away from Villa El Salvador and is a pretty awesome place. It’s basically like a discovery museum. It features several different types of sciences, all with very interactive and engaging exhibits. Emily and I went a few weeks ago to scope it out and plan for todays trip. Ever since that first trip, I’d been quite excited for the kids and I very hopeful that they would enjoy the opportunity.
So, 47 kids. It was a little crazy, to say the least. I’ve had plenty of experience with leading groups of people my own age, but it’s a whole different ball game with kids a few years younger. Also when they are extra hyped up after eating lunch.
We ate lunch at a KFC that was only a couple of blocks away from the park. However, our bus driver wasn’t able to get us very close to the entrance, so we had to walk around the shopping center where said KFC was located. It was not the ideal situation regarding safety, but I made sure that my group walked on the side of the sidewalk that was farthest from the street, looked both ways before crossing and waited for people who needed to catch up. Getting there was fine. We had to make the same trek back to the bus after lunch, but this time I was leading three times as many kids as I had originally brought. There came a point where we had to cross a street and Emily was waiting on the other side. Of course, this is the moment when the kids decide to walk into oncoming traffic. The very last, last, last thing I wanted to happen was for one of them getting hurt, let alone while on my watch, also throw in the right-in-front-of-Emily-Director-of-Building-Dignity, aspect. Although I was pulling back kids by their jackets left and right, everyone safely crossed the street and we made it to the bus.
But really, the everything else went very well. The kids had a great time at the park, we were relatively on-time with the planned out schedule and no one got hurt. It was really nice to be able to take a trip out of Villa with the kids and have fun while also learning about electricity, the human body, physics, biology and loads more.
For the past couple of months, Voices of Youth has been going on one paseo a month. I’m not sure what they have planned for October, but considering how well today went I think it’ll be pretty hard to beat.