Monday, March 2, 2009

Medardo and I

Medardo. What a cute little guy.

Where do I start with this. Lets go from the begining.

Only about a month ago I became a sponsor for Medardo. I was sent some brief information about Medardo and his family. Hes about 8 years old. He has a brother and two sisters. The information told me that he lives in a home made of mud and that he has no bathroom. He has to use the little field behind his house. I was also given a picture of him and another one of him and his mom. That was it. It wasnt much but it was a start. For 24 bucks a month the money was going to a great cause.

Plan is a child centered organization. There biggest funding comes from sponsors all around the world. I believe they have over a million sponsors. Through my travels I have learnd that there are around at least another million children on the list waiting for sponsors. With the money that come from the sponsors Plan works with the community to build things like gardens, they help the community to set up health clinics, and they work on getting good clean water which is a basic neccessity of life. Plans philosophy is a great one, it works but they need more sponsors, they need more help.

I wasnt exactly sure what I was going to say to Medardo when I met him. I was a bit nervous but mostly excited. I had a great opportunity to tell him some stories of what life was like for me back home and hopefully I could learn a thing or two about his life in Guatemala.

I first met Medardo and his dad at the school. It was really hard to talk to him. Of course he was totally shy and there were a ton of kids running around which also made for a distraction. I chatted with his dad for a bit as well. He was an extremely nice man with a giant smile that seemed to come out often. He worked at the local health clinic. He found it interesting that my mom is a nurse midwife. In Guatemala midwifes are very well respected woman and he enjoys the chances he gets to work with them.

Luckily I had the opportunity to hang out with Medardo and his family later that afternoon. Aiden, Anns son, brought Medardo a book as a gift. I got Medardo a football. The thing that I noticed the most was that Medardo couldnt put the book down. Maybe he was trying to avoid all the strange visitors or maybe he was just sooo excited to get a book and a present from a stranger. Medardo and his family dont have much. Compared to what we have back home many people would say that he has nothign at all. The thing that I noticed the most about Medardo was his energy and excitment. His shyness eventually wore off and you could see the life in the kid as he played with the book and the ball. Im sure hes got a big personality.

Right before we left I had an opportunity to take a quick picture with Medardo. I want a picture for back home. Maybe Ill frame it when I get back home. Ill tell my friends and family about him...Heres my buddy in Guatemala Ill tell my friends. He loves to read and even though hes a little guy he also loves football. Right before the picture was taken Medardo tossed his arm around me. It was a nice gesture from a little guy with big heart for a total stranger. Ill never forget that.

Going forward I hope to write to Medardo a few times a year. I already know what the first letter is going to be about. It will be about my return home. Ill tell him about San Francisco and what its like to ride a bike across the Golden Gate Bridge. Ill make sure to include some pictures for him as well.

Im happy I got to make a new friend!

Peace, Power and Pedal


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