By Cherie Brugmans
Special to Seaway News
I turned 40 on Feb. 5 and had this all-girls trip to Grand Palladium in Lucea Jamaica - there were seven of us in total.
I decided that I would like to bring gifts to the children which included pencils, crayons, colouring books, notebooks, balls etc.
So we hired a taxi and he took us up in the mountains to what they call a "BASIC" school for children aged three to five - just like our JK and kindergarten children here.
When we arrived they were very surprised to see us as the mountain schools as usually don’t have visitors.
These are not the same as the local schools in town. The mountain schools have nothing to play with outside except old tires that they roll around and some chalk to make hopscotch with.
As I was handing out my gifts, not one child pushed or shoved trying to get anything - they all waited patiently hoping they would get something and as it turned out I had enough gifts that each child got something.
As the gifts were handed out the light in their eyes made us all speechless. Their teachers had them perform three songs for us as a thank you.
It was amazing!
We spent over an hour there as all of the children wanted to touch our hair - they could not believe how soft it was.
They all wanted to be hugged and kissed and they absolutely loved having their photos taken so they could look at the camera after and see themselves.
They showed us the vegetable, fruit and flower gardens they had planted as they are trying to grow their own produce.
They showed so much pride in these gardens. It was a huge wake-up call, but you know what? These children might have nothing, but they are happy with that just the same.
I would suggest to anyone who can afford to travel to come out off of the resort and see what life for these children is really like.
This was the highlight of our trip.
Some of our group left monetary donations at the school and we have decided that each year around Christmas we will be sending this school a care package.
It is an unexplainable experience that has touched all of our hearts and changed us for the better. I have two boys and am planning to take them to Jamaica so they can see first hand that "THINGS" in life are not important.