Leon – Haley
Maria visited Haley in Leon, the second largest city in Nicaragua (population 180,000). Culturally, Leon is famous as the intellectual center of Nicaragua. Climatically, however, it is unfortunately also famous as the hottest city in the country.
In the mornings Haley takes a taxi to a private school run by CEPAD, an umbrella organization for Protestant churches in Nicaragua. There she works in English classes, either assisting the teacher, Christian, by helping the class with vocabulary or pronunciation, or sometimes teaching the class herself. Now she also has a group of 7-8 seniors that she works with directly. Another project she may begin is to continue a one-hour Saturday English program started by another GC student who worked at this school.
Later that day Haley’s school was celebrating Nicaragua’s National Teacher’s Day, and Maria and Haley were able to attend the event together.
For lunch Haley goes back to her home. Because the CEPAD school is only open in the mornings and Haley didn’t have work in the afternoons, Maria found a public high school where Haley will also be able to help with English classes after her lunch.
At home Haley spends time with her family helping her nephews and nieces with their homework. From her family she has been learning a lot of Spanish and how to get around the big city. On weekends she helps her siblings, who have a musical group that performs at different events. Haley and her host mother help sell the tickets.
Maria and Haley went to visit Leon’s cathedral, the largest in all of Latin America. Inside is the tomb of the poet Ruben Dario, famous throughout Spanish-speaking countries and of immense pride to Nicaraguans.