10 months ago, I sat on a bus with my friend and Tico 31 comrade Princess as we made our way to our San Jose for our first IST (in-service training) just three months after arriving in our sites.
Princess and I are site neighbors, and I use the word “neighbors” loosely because we live almost two hours away from each other.
Princess lives in Sabalito, a city of about 1,000 people while I live higher up in the mountains in a rural community of 150 people.
Sitting on the bus, Princess told me about the challenges her community was facing, especially the young girls in the local high school where she worked. She told me the dropout rate for girls was 4.85% due to risk factors such as prostitution and teen pregnancy, and because she lives so close to the Panamanian border, drugs and poverty also play a big role in the high dropout rate.
We both eagerly made hypothetical plans together to do a girls empowerment camp at the high school sometime during our service. I mean, 10 months ago, we had plenty of time to make some magic happen.