FC: NICARAGUA PEACE CORPS PROJECT
1: 7/26/2012 I just finished my first few days at Nicaragua. I’ve met some good people, it’s strange seeing the world in a completely different way. Most children are at home helping their families or taking part in public services rather than attending classes each day. I got to tour the yucca fields and met a teenage boy working on a road on the way, I asked him about his work and why he didn’t attend school. He said that his family couldn’t afford to send him to upper education, so he started his working career at a young age. After we toured the yucca fields we arrived at the village we were to stay at. Once again, many children seemed to work at home rather than get an education like we do here. We didn’t really see any cars in the village, I’m thinking that the reason for lack of vehicles and education ties in to the economic basis of the community. I asked a man why he was riding a horse and if he could afford a car, he explained that he could afford a vehicle, but the streets were so damaged that it would be useless to have one anyway.
2: 8/15/2012 Today I got to experience two completely different moods of this country. A few days ago I had the opportunity to attend a soccer game, it was amazing seeing how passionate the fans are for their sport. Even though baseball is their national sport, you could believe this was with the reactions throughout the game. It was an amazing event and I had a blast. However, today was polar opposite. A family friend of the people I stayed with passed away today due to some disease that’s been hitting thousands of people. There is no definite known cause, but it’s believed to be tied in with manual labor in agriculture. The government is handing out things like bottled water to keep the workers hydrated, but I don’t know how much that can actually help. On a side note, I saw a miner working to extract gold from minerals using mercury. Are working conditions really this poor? This could definitely be contributing to such diseases, I feel.
3: 9/15/12 Today is Nicaragua’s Independence Day! What an event it was. It was such a huge festival, children and adults partied in the streets together. Today I got to visit some landmarks of the country. I visited the Tomb Of Carlos Fonseca, a monument to Rubio (official poet of Nicaragua), and a statue dedicated to Sandino. It’s rather interesting seeing a monument dedicated to a war hero who lead battles against US Marines in the past.
4: This photograph shows a woman harvesting yucca. Agriculture is a prime export of Nicaragua, almost half of the population relies on agriculture. | Agriculture plays a major role in the economy of Nicaragua, yet only roughly 20% of the land is suitable for cultivation.
5: Many younger children are put to labor on roads and agriculture due to the lack of education. Higher education is available in some areas; however, most families cannot afford it. | In Nicaragua, most families include their children into family businesses at young ages. This is due to the lack of money for higher education.
6: Due to many roads outside the major cities being unpaved and unstable for cars to drive on, many citizens must utilize other modes of transportation.
7: Fans celebrate for their team’s scoring of a goal in soccer. Although baseball is the national sport, soccer is very popular in Nicaragua. | A family mourns the death of a loved one. He is just one of many victims of a mysterious epidemic that has caused the death of over 24,000 deaths since 2000. So far, the majority of the victims have been sugar cane farmers and laborers.
8: A miner uses mercury to separate gold from other minerals. He makes 27 dollars per gram of gold extracted. This is a very dangerous job as mercury is very deadly to come into contact with.
9: This is an image of a statue honoring Cesar Sandino, leader of the fight against US Marines from 1927-1933. He is viewed as a national hero and was seen as an example for the men fighting against the Somozoa government. | This is the Ruben Dario Monument. It was built to honor the national poet of Nicaragua, Ruben Dario.
10: This is a monument to the war hero Sandino where he was allegedly left after being assassinated. Sandino was the major figure in leading forces against the US Marines in the late 20s and early 30s. | This is the tomb of Carlos Fonseca, founder of the Sandanista National Liberation Front.
11: This military vehicle is a scrap from the Nicaraguan Revolution. | This is an image of a poster after the Nicaraguans overthrew the Somoza regime in 1979.
12: patria libre o morir - free country or die
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