About The People

La Romana, Dominican Republic (DR) is a city of over 100,000, whose main industries are tourism and sugar production. Surrounding La Romana are bateyes, crude worker villages found wherever sugarcane is grown. Since the Dominican sugar industry is no longer competitive, the bateyes are some of the poorest communities in the DR.

For decades, Haitians have fled persecution and oppressive poverty in their country by emigrating to the Dominican Republic, which shares their island. Most of the men and boys end up in back-breaking, seasonal work cutting sugarcane for less than a living wage: a good cane cutter is typically paid just $2 to $7 per day. Opportunities for women are limited to gleaning the fields, cooking, and cleaning. Lacking citizenship papers or documentation, these people are trapped in this existence, and are not allowed access to public benefits such as education since they're viewed by the national government as non-citizens.

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About The Mission Trip

Before we step on a plane, we begin preparing for the trip about six months in advance. We usually meet once a month, to plan for the trip, and to run a few fundraisers. In addition to our personal luggage, we typically take two duffel bags per person stuffed with much needed, donated supplies.

Once we're in the DR, there are a lot of different activities that we take on, often dividing up into different groups going to different destinations for different reasons. Each person decides what activities interest them, and how they can best support the people of the bateyes. Below are the activities we have worked on.

Medical Clinics - 2024 Focus

A Medical Team, consisting of team members with medical and non-medical backgrounds, travels by bus to the bateyes and barrios to administer medical exams, medical treatment, eye care, dentistry, and pharmacy. This team also distributes hygiene kits, glasses, clothing and food. Each day, the medical team serves between 70-150 people. For many of the bateyes, this is the only access to medical services the Haitian workers and their families have.

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Batey Bible School - 2024 Focus

This team develops and runs programs for the children of the bateyes. After treating each child with dewormer medicine, the children are treated to crafts, activities, singing and games. The school has different Bible themes, but the joy in the children's faces is always the same. The hugs and laughter are not just about caring for the children, but about giving them hope that the world sees and loves them as they really are - beloved.


Construction on the Good Samaritan General Mission Hospital - 2024 Focus!

Team members work construction on the best medical care facility in La Romana. Since we began pouring the foundation in 1994, construction teams have literally built this five-story hospital from the ground up. This fully-functioning hospital is a working hospital while construction begins on the fifth, and final, floor. Electrical, plumbing, concrete and tile, carpentry, drywall and painting. Our teams have done it all. Every year is an adventure.

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Water Filters - previous years

The water filter team loads up and buses all the supplies needed to install water filtration systems into homes in the bateyes. These sand-and-gravel-based systems develop a biolayer that removes the parasites and bacteria in the water and delivers clean, healthy drinking water for up to 20 years per unit. In both 2016 and 2017, our team members hauled over 8,000 pounds of sand and over 2,000 pounds of stone throughout the bateyes, and installed 100 family-sized water filtration systems.  The original water filters that our team installed in the most remote bateyes are still effective.

In 2018, the filters installed were smaller plastic cisterns with replaceable charcoal filters.  This new filter type is required due to the introduction of chlorine into some of the water systems.  The chlorine kills the biolayer of the sand-and-gravel based systems and renders them useless.    However, the filtration systems for the bateys that are closer to the cities, with public water, are being served with these new filters that do not require our teams installation.  Therefore we are presently turning our efforts to other focuses.


Days for Girls Program - 2024 Focus

Started in 2017, the Days for Girls program held two full sessions per day, gave out 170 hand-made, reusable feminine hygiene kits, and educated the women of the bateyes about feminine hygiene, reproduction, and safe sexual practices, self defense and sex trafficking education.  This program has the power to keep women in school or at work all month long while educating them on their self worth and body needs.  This program has the ability to change the entire culture in the Dominican Republic.

BIG NEWS - November 2020 - Thanks to relentless persistence from members of our team, money and support from a Canadian Days for Girls team and many meetings in person and on zoom, the first Days for Girls enterprise in the Dominican has been created and licensed.  This enterprise is training DfG embassadors in the La Romana region and the Good Samaritan Hospital has just signed a contract to provide DfG kits and education to thousands of girls in La Romana.  The enterprise hopes to spread the program throughout all of the DR but the La Romana area will now be leading the way.

Great Job, Team!


Storm Damage Relief - 2023 Focus

After the devastation of Hurricane Fiona in September 2022, our team helped rebuild and repair buildings in the surrounding Bateyes.

Fiona slams Dominican Republic after pounding Puerto Rico


Home Building- 2018 & 2019 Focus

Since 2018, the Construction Team will be building duplex homes for a village and family in need.

The Mission Team has decided to go out into Batey Papita, a poor sugarcane village in need of permanent housing.  We will try to raise $8,400 to pay for a home and attempt to mostly build that home while in the Dominican.  These homes are sturdy, concrete shelters from storms.  Their present homes are dangerous during storms with wall materials and roofing turning into flying debris.  The new homes are also well ventilated which is important since they do a fair amount of open fire cooking inside.

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