Jamaica Service Learning

I took these pictures while on a service learning trip in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica. In preparation we read books like “A Small Place” and “Mountains Beyond Mountains”. Jamaica was the most beautiful place I had ever seen, with people who truly changed my perspective on life. These children, if they are lucky enough to go to junior high school (called high school there) walk 10 miles each way to attend school, with over 3000 feet of elevation gain or loss. If it rains, they walk that far just to see if school is open. Most live without electricity or many basic comforts that we enjoy every day. I never thought to be grateful for something as simple as a dresser until I went to the Blue Mountains. But they enjoy something so much deeper, that we are losing here in the United States, a simple, basic human connection based on need, which means that they know each other, value each other and take care of each other. In a way they have more than we do. And the environment there in the hills among the coffee farms is so lush it literally rendered me speechless for days, I would just find myself staring. This trip to a developing country lead me to question my values to my very core. What is most important? What do you really need?

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