Playing at Night

We all know what it is like to have an idea and wait to see it to fruition. For years, our houseparents have asked that we consider illuminating the soccer field and basketball court so that they could be used at night. In El Salvador, it gets dark between 6:00 and 6:30 PM each evening – all year round. The children are in school until almost 4:00 PM, then homework and appointments and chores. Exercise is healthy for all of us, but to those who have difficult pasts, it is essential. In many occasions, by the time the whole family could participate together in using the recreational fields, it would be dark. It’s not that the children don’t exercise; we have yards that are spacious. However, the houseparents and children wanted to be able to use the recreational areas more. The lighted fields would make it possible to get rid of more anxious energy before bedtime. Although this was a worthwhile project, other things have always seemed to take precedence, until this summer.

We welcomed two Inside-Out teams from Atlanta, Georgia this summer. Their project money was designated to illuminating the soccer field and basketball court area. This was a dream come true for the children and staff in the homes. The youth carried heavy bags of sand and rock down the steep incline and steps to the soccer field. They dug a ditch around the entire soccer field to be able to lay cable and wiring for the electricity. They also dug holes for the platform and poles that would hold the lights. This was strenuous labor in the extreme heat we’ve been having, but they were motivated and got the work done. Our maintenance person completed the electrical part of the project, and now we have lights on the field and court at night!

These teams also enjoyed interacting with our children and our neighbors as they learned more about life in El Salvador. We were even able to exchange celebrations and celebrate the 4th of July with one of the teams!

We are thankful for the continued partnership with GlobalX and their journey teams. Wishing all of the youth a great start to their new school year. May they carry with them lessons learned in giving to others this summer.