Danielle Frebrowski also known as Miss Teen Rockyview County World 2010 has just returned form her trip to Ecuador with Free the Children. Danielle’s trip lasted almost three weeks as she travelled to 2 different communities to help build schools and took a tour of the Amazon Rainforest.
Visiting the Community of Shuid:
The first community Danielle visited was Shuid. Here she was given numerous opportunities to help out, as was the case throughout her trip – there is so much work to be done! But in Shuid she was not there just to build a school – at this destination, and all through her journey, she learned about leadership and responsibility.
Danielle was put in charge of delegating tasks and making sure that the team’s spirits were high while working towards their goal. The trip focused on building schools, but Free the Children wanted to focus on life lessons. The group was divided into teams given the challenge to provide for their “family” on a budget. After assessing their responsibilities the team was left with $0.77 to provide a meal for 7. With their money, they were able to buy two bags of rice and 2 stems of broccoli. This was a big wake up call to Danielle as she recalls spending $20.00 daily on a meal for herself. She recognizes the struggle of others and writes, “Overall this was an incredibly impacting opportunity, as I now will be more careful when it comes to not wasting food.”
Danielle at The Community of Chismaute:
The second community Danielle visited was Chismaute. This is where she met a young woman named Maria. This lady was a very special part of her community, because she’s part of a small group of local girls that had the opportunity to get an education and graduate from school. This is very difficult for a woman to do in the community because women do not receive the same rights as men. Talking to Maria and sharing in her experiences was very motivating.
Danielle wrote about Maria and her struggle to become the President of the Community in her blog. Maria won the majority of the votes because people wanted to see her fail. Instead, Maria rose to the challenge and has been very successful with her title.
After meeting Maria, the team went on to building the school in the community.
Danielle was put in charge of drawing the mural in the cafeteria. Danielle decided to draw water bubbles to promote cleanliness and add some color to the room.
Experience at the Amazon Rainforest:
The next day, Danielle along with the team had to be up at 6 AM for their 10 hour drive to the Amazon Rainforest. Danielle wrote about her experience in the Amazon saying “Walking in the jungle was an experience I’ll never forget. The sounds, the smells, the animals we encountered, it was really amazing to have so much biodiversity around us.” While at the Rainforest, she also got to meet an indigenous Medicine man and took part in a cleansing ceremony. After, she learned how to cook and clean fish and bugs. After leaving the Amazon, Danielle and her team headed towards Quito to begin her journey home. You can read more about this trip-of-a-lifetime in Danielle Frebrowski in Ecuador with Free The Children.