Cruise Pack Mission Cozumel - Ciudad de Angeles
by Peter of Petes Travel Center
(McDonough, GA, USA)
View Outside the Orphanage
The day finally came for our cruise pack mission to Cozumel - Ciudad de Angeles.
Almost a year before, Petes Travel Center organized the second sailing in the "Make a Difference" cruise series. The plan was to visit an orphanage in Cozumel, with each participant bringing a backpack with items needed by the children. Petes Travel Center would provide the backpacks, while the participants add the items.
After promoting the trip, several people signed on to go. While some people cancelled along the way, we still had twenty-one (21) people who joined me on the Cruise Pack Mission to Cozumel.
On February 15, 2016, we set sail from New Orleans on a 5-day cruise to Cozumel and Progreso. We arrived in Cozumel on February 17th, hired two taxicabs and set off to the MEGA store. We bought some additional items there and then set off for Ciudad de Angeles, about twenty minutes away.
Upon arriving at the orphanage, we were met by two representatives appointed by the director to guide us. Our guides briefed us about the orphanage: how they get the children, the things they do for the children and how they depend on sponsors overseas for funding.
We learned that the Ciudad de Angeles currently houses forty (40) children from ages two (2) through nineteen (19). The children live in houses with "mothers" who care for them. Each orphan attends school and is also taught about God.
As for funding, the orphanage does does not get help from the government. There is a US director and through him and others, sponsors are sought in the United States.
After our briefing, we got to tour the facilities. We saw the laundry room, where the older children learn to wash clothes. We saw their library and learned that they are in need of many books. We even met the psychologist who works with the children.
Our final stop was at one of the houses, where we got a chance to meet a "mother" and interact with some of the children. Unfortunately, they all spoke Spanish and we all spoke English. I was able to ask for names in Spanish and got the children to respond, but that was the most we accomplished in terms of communicating. We tried other things like hand gestures and spent some time exchanging smiles.
Over all, it was a lovely trip. We left more than twenty-two (22) backpacks with goodies for the orphans and each of us left there with a deeper sense of how we can help others.
Cruise Pack Mission Cozumel to Ciudad de Angeles was a success. I am eternally grateful to all those who gave of themselves and their resources to make this trip happen.