DDG Companion News | November 30, 2019

Children enrolled in the Episcopal school in Jarabacoa
 attending an assembly in the local Episcopal Church.

Professional Development Moves Forward

Once again this December, the Educational Mission Team will travel to the Dominican Republic for a  sixth workshop series to provide professional development opportunities for Episcopal educators. With
Diocesan colegios now resembling a school system, ongoing, regular professional development  opportunities have made a difference in making educational improvement a reality in many schools. Our
major partners, Education Coordinator Miguelina Jorge Corporan, and School Board President Florencia  Melvina Dinsey, provide valuable counsel to Bishop Moises Quezada Mota that guides our team efforts.

The team arrives in Santo Domingo on December 8th and returns home on the 14th. In the 5 work-days  in-between, we will work closely with improvement teams at 8 model schools to facilitate their projects
for instructional transformation. In May, these teams set goals for programmatic change in two areas  (English language learning and educational technology) and elaborated plans for meeting them. This
trip, we will help the teams make progress in intensive, collaborative work sessions. No speeches or  presentations this time; we're rolling-up our sleeves and digging into projects that our Dominican
colleagues have identified.

Once again, this professional development activity departs from past efforts in its scope, focus and  impetus for change. We have become contributors to a major change initiative developed and carried
forward by teachers and administrators in Diocesan colegios. Our role demonstrate the growing scope,  local ownership, targeted nature and potential impact of educational improvement efforts.

We welcome your thoughts and prayers as we travel and work in the Dominican Republic in the coming  weeks. And, as always, thank you for your continuing support.

-- Dr. Thomas McGowan, Educational Missionary

To follow Tom McGowan's work in the Diocese of the Dominican Republic via his blog posts, go here: 

Groundbreaking for the new child care center north of Boca Chica

Breaking Ground for New Child Care Center

On Friday, November 14, 2019, the Rt. Rev. Moises Quezada Mota, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of the Dominican Republic, took part in a groundbreaking ceremony for a new child care center to serve the neighborhood near Iglesia Episcopal Monte de Sión, just north of the city of Boca Chica. Attending this event were members of the Dominican Republic's governmental oversight agency for child care centers, members of the Monte de Sión congregation, members of the Dominican Episcopal clergy, and two groups of missioners from the United States -- a mission team from the  Episcopal Church of the Redeemer in Sarasota, FL, and another group of missioners from the Dioceses of Georgia and Louisiana who were participating in a DDG-sponsored pilgrimage trip to visit many of the churches, schools, and other facilities of the Dominican diocese in a one-week period. The Redeemer team will be taking the lead in supporting the construction of this child care center in the next two years. 

The December issue of Compañeros Dominicanos, the DDG's bilingual  quarterly news magazine, will contain an article about the Redeemer missioners and their November 2019 mission trip featuring the daily blog posts by Andy Dorr, one of the missioners on that veteran team.

DDG Executive Director Bill Kunkle with the donated ambulance

Another Donated Ambulance On The Way
To The Diocese of the Dominican Republic

Bill Kunkle, Director of the Dominican Development Group, recently stopped by St. Peter's Episcopal Church in Savannah, GA, in a bright orange and white ambulance from West Jefferson, NC, via the Church of the Servant in Wilmington, NC. While at St. Peter's, he visited with Jim and Haydee Toedtman, the leaders of the optical clinic mission team sponsored by St. Peter's. After a layover in Tampa, the ambulance will be driven to Miami and transported by container ship to Santo Domingo. Its final destination is Jimaní, a crossroads town of 13,000 just east of the Haitian-Dominican Republic border. 

The ambulance mission began in 2015 during a DDG playground-building mission trip to Jimaní. The missioners heard of the need for an ambulance. Two years later, an ambulance was secured and delivered to the community of Baní in the southern Dominican Republic. 

This year, the second ambulance was secured. During his drive through North and South Carolina, Georgia and Florida, Kunkle packed the new ambulance with medical supplies, clothing and equipment. It should arrive in Santo Domingo in mid-December, where it will be welcomed and blessed by the Rt. Rev. Moisés Quezada Mota. 

-- Jim Toedtman, St. Peter's Episcopal Church, Savannah, GA

Links to online copies of recent issues of the DDG Companion News:
For earlier issues archived on the DDG website, click here.

Contact the DDG:
Office: (813) 400-2722 | Fax: (813) 983-5082
Executive Director: Bill Kunkle | bkunkle@dominicandevelopmentgroup.org
PO Box 272261 | Tampa Florida 33688-2261

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