Inspired Words

These are the experiences of our volunteers in Phillipines.

May 6th: Working on the drainage pipe

Posted in Phillipines on May 7, 2014

We woke to the second day of work with the heat and humidity rising. Rick and Shauna dug into a Filipino breakfast of egg, dried fish and toast or rice. The rest of us stuck with more familiar breakfast choices.

When we arrived at the community centre, we were all anxious to see how work had progressed. The trench we had so proudly dug was almost twice as deep as what we had completed the day before, thanks to the workman who had stayed longer. So the project was ready for the next stage. This was a day of cement mixing and pouring a floor.

Rick jumped in to help the workers prepare the cement. The mixing platform was moved closer to the back of the centre, where the cement would be poured. We were eager to get moving and pitch in. Some lugged buckets of water to make the slurry. Others hauled in wheel barrels of stone to be mixed in. Once the cement was ready, we carried buckets of heavy wet cement to the area that was laid out neatly in sections of t-bar and gravel.

No sooner was the cement down than the dogs got into it! They looked so funny! So we grabbed them and wiped the wet cement from their snouts. Robin volunteered to give the dogs a shampoo at the end of the job. Robin was thrilled at the prospect of hosing the dogs down and lathering soap into their gritty and grimy fur. It made her think of all the fun she has at home with her own two dogs. After all, dogs and dirt go together no matter what part of the world you live in.

The cement pouring didn't need too many players. So other tasks were found. Robin learned how to measure and tie t-bar sectional frames to use later for building a small retaining wall. Heather, Debbie, Shana and Dianne set up an assembly line on the porch and separated medical supplies into boxes of gauze, surgical pads, and bandage strips. These would be used by volunteers dentists arriving in a few weeks to provide dental care to kids and adults living near the centre.

Just before lunch, the t-bar frame was carried over and placed in a trench, which was later filled with more cement.

Dogs washed, work done, we settled into a great lunch of tuna sandwiches and succulent mangoes. It was another great day and we came away feeling proud of what we had accomplished.

Back at the hotel, we met for our daily debrief and headed off for some private time. Thai food for dinner hit the spot -- along with a few cold ones of course!

Dianne Clarke
DWC Volunteer Participant
Cebu City, Philippines: May 2014

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