(The sky, and clouds are unreal here at times)
(This song, and album has been some of the main music that has helped me through my YAV year. It reminds me of what the beach feels like, and what is like to drive around with the huge sky above. Hit play, and let it be the soundtrack to this blog).
Well hey there world, it’s been a while hasn’t it?
It’s officially been a month, and two weeks since I’ve started my life as a Y.A.V. in Miami. Things… have been interesting to say the least.
So far I’ve experienced so many things. It would be too many to name, but I’ll try my best.
To start it off let me tell you about the food in Miami. Whenever they say Miami is one of the most culturally diverse places in the U.S. they aren’t lying, and you can definitely tell with all the food options this place has to offer. There are so many flavors here that it’s unreal at times.
For instance; so far I’ve had the pleasure of tasting:
- Cuban Food
- Cuban Coffe (Colada!)
- Venezuelan Food (Pepiitos!)
(Pepitos, a Venezuelan street food dish, which we’ve fallen head over heels for)
- Haitian Food
- Argentinean food
There are still so many things to try though like Puerto Rican, and Brazilian food. I’m really excited to dive into all these different cuisines because pretty much everything I’ve eaten has been super tasty.
Another thing that I’ve been doing a lot is going on a church tour every Sunday of all different kinds of churches the Miami area. We’ve done this for the past 6 weeks, and it’s been really fascinating just to see how all these different denominations do their worship. We’ve (YAV house and our site coordinator Michelle) experienced pretty much everything under the ginormous Christianity-denomination umbrella. For instance the first weekend here we went to an all-Spanish speaking Presbyterian church, and then last weekend we went to a Lutheran Church.
(The all-Spanish church service where I understood everything 100%.. and it just so happened to have been opposite day as well)
This has been a little tiring, but it really makes one think about what they want out of a church community, and service.
Another part of my YAV experience has been Community Day Fridays. On these days I’ve gotten to learn about crucially important things affecting the world. I’ve also got to volunteer at some pretty rad non-profits.
The things I’ve done regarding that:
- Worshiped at a catholic soup kitchen, and then helped them feed the homeless afterwards.
(A statue of the Virgin Mary outside of the soup kitchen. We weren’t allowed to take photos inside, but at least I got this!)
- Learned about gentrification, and watch a video that talks about Wynwood, which is a super hip up-and-coming part of Miami (here’s the video if you want to watch:https://vimeo.com/110682099).
- We went to Easter Seals, which is a place that helps people with many different mental disabilities. While we there we helped with the part of it that deals with people with Alzheimers, and different levels of Dementia.
Now I bet you’re wondering what have I been doing while in Miami. When I came here I actually already knew what I would be doing, which was nice since at orientation a lot of the YAVs I talked to didn’t know what they would be doing. Since then though some things have transpired which have led me to not being associated with that non-profit anymore. I didn’t get fired or anything. It’s just that some things happened, and now I’m waiting for the next placement. Because of this I have had the opportunity to volunteer at a lovely non-profit called Branches, which is basically an after school program where I help kids with homework.
Besides that I’ve also gotten the chance to help DOOR with their Discover groups (a part of DOOR where they have groups come in for week long mission trips) like last week. During this time I was an assistant to my site coordinator Michelle, and helped her out with various things. I also got to go back to Easter Seals, which was kind of a heartbreaking experience since the people I met last time has no idea who I was even though we had like a two hour conversation, but more of that some other time!
Since this post is already getting kind of huge I’ll stop right now, but I’m going try my best to upload more so please stay tuned. I’ll leave you though with this
Thanks for reading, and until next time have a great day!
P.S. If you’d like to donate to my Y.A.V. year then there is a nifty little donate section on my blog up top!
There you will find all the info on how to make a contribution! Thank you very much if you decide to do this. You have no idea how much I appreciate it.