March 10-16, 2018: We made our 2nd annual USC Caruso Catholic Center Thrive in Joy Dominican Republic Alternative Spring Break trip in partnership with VisionTrust International. We spent time with the students at Tia Tatiana School doing art projects with the younger grades and giving encouragement to the high school students to persevere and follow their dreams. We also painted murals and made upgrades to the school attended by the children who live at the Remar Orphanage. The highlight of the trip was having time to play and talk with the kids at the orphanage and experience the connection we share through God’s love.Read More
The Thrive in Joy Nick Fagnano Foundation partners with VisionTrust and invites you to join us in November or March (the March trip is primarily for students affiliated with the USC Caruso Catholic Center) for a mission trip to Santo Domingo, in the Dominican Republic. If you're interested in a life-changing experience where the joy you bring is returned to you in multiples by these loving children in the DR, email Mary Fagnano at mary@email@example.com. Our next trip will be November 9-14, 2018.
It's always wonderful to come back to Tia Tatiana School in Herera and be greeted by Evelisa, the principal. Nick's photo is always right there in her office. We feel a deep connection to this school that educates so many children that come from this very poor community.
The students, however, carry themselves with confidence and show so much affection for each other and respect for their teachers. They even stand when we enter the classroom.
Today we did an art project with the 1st graders in the morning and with the 7th graders in the afternoon. We finished the day with a team building project in the 8th grade class where we challenged them to build a tower with spaghetti with a marshmallow on top and not have it topple within 10 seconds at the end of the project. There was quite a competitive spirit in the room but learning the value of a strong foundation was the most important take-away. We had a great team of volunteers... Anne Butfilofsky, Maegan Butler, and Ronnie Haney who worked with the kids to make the time really fun and productive.
Jay, with Greg's help in the kitchen, made Nick's favorite lunch...chicken and broccoli pasta...more pictures on that to come! They fed all 300+ of the students grades 1-6! Everyone loved it!
We love being here. The kitchen at Tia Tatiana that the Caruso Catholic Center students refurbished when they were here in March looks great and Jay had fun cooking in it. Tomorrow is our last day...we head to the airport in the afternoon.