8 stories that fed my soul in the Dominican Republic

Post Summary: 

Food blogger Melissa Bailey (Hungry Food Love) grew up in the Dominican Republic, and returned to her homeland last week with the World Vision Bloggers!

Take a tour of eight stories she experienced that nourished her soul, and the top five things she learned about World Vision.

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Visiting the Dominican Republic, where I am currently writing from, has always been a big deal. I was born and raised in this beautiful country, and even though I no longer live here, this will always be my home. When I plan a trip back, I spend every minute daydreaming about what I will get to do, see, and try during my stay.

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    Unique solutions to unique poverties

    Post Summary: 

    A new post live from the Dominican Republic! Every unique version of poverty requires it's own custom solution. See how the programs we're visiting in the DR are doing just that!

    And meet a young doctor who's demonstrating that communities can be stronger when they work together.

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    I’m writing from the Dominican Republic where I’m traveling right now with a group of our wonderful and amazing bloggers (meet them below!). As I always am, I’m amazed by the immersive, colorful experience of a new country, a new culture, a new people.

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      Why I am traveling to the Dominican Republic

      Post Summary: 

      Blogger Leanette Fernandez will be joining us as our World Vision Bloggers depart for the Dominican Republic on Sunday to see firsthand how World Vision communities are working together to be greater than poverty!

      Read about why Leanette is excited for this trip … and the amazing people we're planning to meet there.

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      When I began blogging 6 years ago, one of my main goals for doing so was to help people. Anytime I am able to partner with an organization, in this case World Vision, to help others, I am filled with joy! That pretty much explains why I am smiling as I type this post.

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        After crisis: The whole story

        Post Summary: 

        When we talk about crisis—conflict, sickness, hunger—let’s tell the whole story: one that includes our response to what God is calling us to do in the face of hardship, knowing that in the end there can be courage, hope, and love.

        See how World Vision is part of the whole story, and how we can be #GreaterTogether.

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        Every day in the news, we see stories of crisis—conflict, hunger, sickness, natural disaster—but when we stop hearing about them, after the media and public eye lose interest in these stories, what happens next?

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          An Armenian family update: One year later

          Post Summary: 

          One year ago today, we were in Armenia with a group of bloggers including Anna Whiston-Donaldson, who inspired her readers to make sure that all of Aida and Vova's children were sponsored!

          A year later with World Vision's partnership, see what's different and new for this family of ten … and the challenges they're still facing.

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          Exactly one year ago, as part of a team of World Vision bloggers, I headed to Armenia to experience cold weather poverty first-hand and see the work World Vision does to strengthen families and communities.

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            12 steps to a deeper relationship with your sponsored child

            Post Summary: 

            What if the best New Year's resolution you can make for 2016 isn't even about you?

            This 12-step guide from blogger Rachel Teodoro outlines monthly fun and creative ways that will help you build a deep relationship with the child you sponsor throughout the year!

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            There is something exciting about starting a new year. I know many of us commit to making changes in the New Year. Maybe you write a list of resolutions that promptly get broken before you even get out of January. I know I do!

            What if I told you that the best New Year's resolution you can make this year isn't even about you? What if I gave you a monthly step-by-step way to dig deeper into a relationship with a vulnerable child that could be life-changing—not only for you, but for that child and their community?

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              This simple action could change the world

              Post Summary: 

              On our Cambodia trip, see what gave blogger Stephanie May Wilson goosebumps — even in the oppressive heat! — and how the simple action it represents could change the world.

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              I know this is disappointing, but I really don’t like to hike. It’s disappointing because I’m a Coloradan, born and bred. But even the beautiful Rocky Mountains could never inspire me to spend a Saturday sweating my way up a trail.

              But even with my distaste for the activity, I went on a hike with my aunt a few weeks ago—jumping at the chance for some quality time with her.

              At first the hike was exactly as we expected. It wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t impossible either. “Maybe this hiking thing isn’t as bad as I thought!” I considered with surprising optimism.

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                Making poverty a choice

                Post Summary: 

                Two mothers we met this week on our Cambodia bloggers trip illustrated the truth that poverty doesn't come from a series of choices, but rather a lack of choices.

                Meet these two brave mothers who find themselves in difficult times … and make your own choice.

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                In Cambodia, heat and humidity join forces in an unholy alliance causing air-conditioned reliant Westerners to leak sweat from pores long dormant. Sure, there are places in the southern United States that feature heat and humidity as compliments to their sweet tea, but there’s one major difference between Southern states and Cambodia: In the U.S.

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                  Imagining a father who stays

                  Post Summary: 

                  This morning in Cambodia, we met four-year-old Reatrey!

                  Last month, her father left for Thailand to work and send money home, but this plan is risky and could put her family in a difficult situation.

                  Let's imagine a better story for her future … let's make it happen.

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                  Our staff photographer on our blogger trip here in Cambodia, Laura Reinhardt, featured the above photo in yesterday’s photoblog. I love this photo … but the story behind it worries me. Here’s why.

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                    Slices of life in Cambodia

                    Post Summary: 

                    This week, World Vision bloggers Nate Pyle and Stephanie May Wilson join us in Cambodia! We'll be visiting two of our communities to witness the transformation that child sponsorship brings into the lives of children and their families, and sharing our experience with you.

                    Today, our photographer Laura Reinhardt shares a few favorite photos of some of the children we're meeting. Join us on our journey!

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                    Phnom Sruoch is a World Vision community here in Cambodia that we're hoping to expand in the near future. Currently, many families are living in poverty, which leads to children dropping out of school so they can help their families survive. Many families also struggle with food insecurity. Here are a few of the children we're meeting …

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