Terra Livre


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Fatima Calderon, Editor

Spring break is most known for going somewhere tropical and laying out in the sun all day, but others give up spending time with family and friends to participate in Terra Livre. This yearly trip took place during spring break and both students and staff members can go on it.

The organization started 20 years ago and Dowling Catholic has been involved for 13 years.

Staff and students spend a whole week in Brazil working with an organization centered on helping those in need in the area especially young kids. Tierra livre has a mission of furthering education, but also doesn’t sweat the small stuff,
“It’s more about providing a safe place for these kids and the community, volunteers provide meals and show the love which many lack,” theology teacher Terry Clark said.
Clark is a theology teacher at Dowling, he has participated in the Terra Livre trip for the past two years, his biggest takeaway from this year was that,
“Even though we don’t speak the same language as the kids, it doesn’t really matter because a smile is universal and so is love, you don’t need a language to show compassion,” Clark said.
Students arrive on Saturday and spend the beginning of the trip getting familiar with the culture, as the week start they do an introduction into the program. The rest of the four days they spend time with the kids and do other fun activities in the Terra Livre center.
Senior Sela Davis decided to go on this trip because she knew this would have a bigger impact on her than going on another vacation. This experience was more than she expected it to be,
“I was brought to tears when I met the kids because all they were asking for was love and the bare minimum which is something many of the kids here take for granted,” Davis said.
Davis didn’t know what to expect on the whole trip, but she was excited about meeting her host family,
“They provided me with such an authentic Brazilian experience that it felt like home to me,” Davis said.
Davis also talked about how this trip prompted her to probably go into social work because of the emotions she felt helping those in need.
Junior Kirby Power also went on this trip to work with kids and experience a new country and culture. She took a lot away from this trip, but one thing that stood out was how,
“Even though the kids don’t have a lot they still make the most of it,” Power said.
Power especially enjoyed the food and the different culture,
“I love how the food is authentic and not processed like it is here,” Power said.
Both Davis and Power would highly recommend this trip to an underclassman. After this trip they would like to go back or do other mission work because they were inspired by this opportunity.