A 40-foot tractor-trailer load of donated goods has arrived in the Dominican Republic and is being distributed to communities and medical facilities around the country.
The local humanitarian aid organization ACES North America collected the donations and volunteers loaded the container in late October. After a short delay due to Hurricane Sandy, the shipment was sent to the Haina port near Santo Domingo. The customs officials unloaded the trailer and inspected all of the items and supporting documentation. They reloaded the container and it was trucked to a house that is rented by ACES. Once again, the items were unloaded and sorted for distribution.
Several organizations participated in this endeavor. Roberto's Kids, an outreach program honoring the late Roberto Clemente, seeks to bridge the gap between different cultures through baseball. They achieve this through the collection and distribution of new and gently worn baseball equipment.
Half of the ACES trailer was filled with sporting equipment that is destined for youth and adult programs in the Dominican Republic.
Sharing Hope Ministries, a local organization that supports yearly trips to the Dominican Republic, sent barrels of work gloves for their construction projects.
Freedom International Ministries of Noblesville, Ind., sent a generator for use in their Dominican mission project.
There were cartons of books and other educational supplies destined for the community library, literacy program and international school of Fundacion Mahatma Gandhi, a nonprofit organization in Las Terrenas, DR.
Locally, a wide variety of items were collected and stored in the warehouse at R.E. Smith Co.
This included dental office equipment, hospital beds and cribs, school supplies, toys, sewing machines, medical equipment and health aids, sports equipment and office equipment, to name just a few.
ACES appreciates all of the donations and the volunteers who helped with this project.
It cost about $5,000 to ship the container. Funds from their annual fall yard sale paid for ACES share of the bill.
During a service trip in January, several ACES volunteers will travel to the Dominican Republic and will help distribute some of the container goods.
For more information about this and other ACES projects or to volunteer, contact Linell Stabler at 419-1218, or Wendy McCormick at 745-7210, or visit the organization's website at www.acesnorthamerica.org.