Going back to school for a day

As part of our IBM Corporate Service Corps assignment we visited two schools in the Arica y Parinacota region to better understand the education program and specifically JUNAEB’s school feeding program.

It was very informative, but also a lot of fun.

In order to enter the kitchen we needed to wear: sneakers, long-pants, a lab-coat and a hair net.  So we were quite decked-out for our visit.

We saw how the food was prepared and handed out to the children at snack-time and at lunch-time.  We were shown where the food was stored, both the packaged food and the fresh vegetables.  Each school also has a canteen where kids can purchase their own foods.  We were glad to see fruit as an option at one of the schools.

We talked with a lot of the kids at recess – most of it was a pretty basic conversation as they spoke no English and we spoke very little Spanish.  I would say “Me Llamo Jen” (my name is Jen) and “Yo Soy de Canada” (I am from Canada).  I would also ask them about their favourite sports.

The kids were fascinated with Helen from China and asked her a huge number of questions about China through our translator Gabriela.

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We were also invited into a couple classrooms where we introduced ourselves, and asked about favourite sports, favourite foods, favourite healthy foods and then we encouraged them to ask questions.   Then asked even more questions about China.  How do you eat with chopsticks?  How do you say hello in Chinese?  What are toys like in China?

The visit really helped us better understand the school system in Chile, and specifically how the school feeding program works.

#IBMCSC Chile  #CSCChile8