December 16, 2016
What a great day… Much work preparing for our Christmas brunch, but worth every hour spent. An abundance of joy and love was shared with several surprises.
The generosity of these poor people surprised us with gifts of potatoes, avocados, eggs, pineapples, and more to be shared by our volunteers. They have very little to share and this was a special blessing that almost brought some of us to tears.
Two of our volunteers donated 30 chickens and did all the preparations to serve. Our two Indigenous cooks prepared 50 pounds of potatoes and 50 pounds of rice. Another friend brought two large bowls of fruit salad.
Some of our desserts came from two of our local pastry shops and included brownies and commercial size pans of pumpkin pie and a special holiday cake. Two of our volunteers made banana bread and a couple of cakes. We served over 100 people and had more than enough food. We were happy to fix take-away bags for them to enjoy over the weekend.
We were surprised by a special dance only performed during Christmas. Some of the people who eat breakfast at Place of Hope dressed in various outfits. Some wore black masks and gloves and others different masks with colorful skirts and blouses. The dance was unique and came from the Coast of Ecuador representing the black community and part of the dance included a bit of the mountain sites. Everyone was invited to dance and it was a lot of fun.
Another special surprise was a visit from Papa Noel (Santa Claus) by one of our volunteers. Papa Noel mingled with the people and there were a few young children at his side. Goody bags that had been prepared in advance were distributed. The bag included cookies that resemble our animal crackers in the US with some candies. This is a traditional gift at Christmas.
It was a wonderful fiesta for all to enjoy. Your continued support with donations made this a very special celebration. Again, we appeal to your generosity in making Place of Hope a continued reality in serving our poor. No donation is too small and all funds support Place of Hope. There are no administrative fees.
Wishing you and your families a Merry Christmas.
A joyous celebration to those who celebrate Hanukkah.
Founder of Ecuador Project Hope
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