Greetings. I am Tim Prewitt, from Corbin, Kentucky. A year ago, I was counting down the days I had left at my office job in the United States, before setting out for literally God knows where. These days I teach 4th grade and 9th grade English classes at Cofradia’s Bilingual School. I trust I’m in the right place for now.
I find myself at CBS for a variety of reasons. First, I wanted to know Central America. As the calling to see and experience this part of the globe steadily increased within me over the past few years, I came to realize that a one-week vacation or two wasn’t going to cut it. I wanted to really spend some time here. To be precise, I hoped to connect and to really engage in the community wherever I was placed. I had other aspirations, too – such as trying my hand at something different than my construction management career, practicing my Spanish, working with youth, and living with others again, since I had been living alone for quite some time. As I searched online for a place that fit those parameters, CBS stood out. Once I made contact with the volunteer coordinator and applied and interviewed, I had complete faith that this was where I was being led for now.
I’ve been here for 3 months and it has been a very diverse experience. I felt led here in the first place, so I had to follow that urging. There is peace in that. But I must admit I’ve forgotten that detail a few times since arriving here, too. This is not always an easy place to be. There are a lot of highs and lows here. There are joys and frustrations; delights and disappointments. But when I look back on the reasons I had for coming here, I have certainly gotten what I came for. I have seen and experienced authentic Central America. Regarding community, I have had countless conversations with new friends and strangers alike. People have time for each other here. Also, I’ve seen the inside of more homes here in 3 months than I had in the past 2 years or so in the U.S. Some of the conditions here are a challenge, to be sure, but I’m growing as a result. The fruits of the spirit are always in season here. If I ever become a parent, I’ll be better equipped after this experience. That brings me to the kids at school. They impress me so much, with their eternal optimism and their honesty, generosity, and the way they look out for each other – not to mention their English abilities! As volunteers here, we get paid in hugs and smiles and laughs, but every day is payday in those currencies.
So here I am, taking things a day at a time – often one small blessing at a time. I’m grateful for each “Meester Tim!!!” that gets yelled my way and each time a student comes up for a handshake or a hug. That fills my cup. I smile even as I write about it. I’m here to teach, but also to learn. I’m thankful for the things I am learning here. I’ve worked with 3 different grades now, and the common thread between them all is the students’ caring for each other and their contentment with small things. It’s nice to see that. I’m rediscovering how simple life can be, and I certainly feel more alive than I did behind that desk and computer a year ago. Yes, this is the right place for now.