Tres Ceibas is a community of approximately 600 people just 10 minutes inland from the North coast of the Dominican Republic. This community is about an hour east of Cabarete, and 15 minutes west of Rio San Juan. The economy here is primarily based on tourism, with a large percentage of adults working in the nearby all-inclusive Bahia Principe Hotel. The landscape alternates between cacao forests, cow pastures and conucos (small plots of land devoted to food crops like plantains, pigeon peas and squash). Cacao production and dairy farming are also sources of local income.
The Mariposas Brillantes of Tres Ceibas is a group of 12 girls ranging in age from 12 to 21. They meet once a week for presentations on themes such as self-esteem, reproductive health, healthy communication and relationships, and goal-setting. They also participate in community service projects such as beach, river and school clean-ups, where they help to pick up plastic litter that is contaminating their environment. The girls love to do arts and crafts projects, and fundraise by making and selling earrings made from recycled magazines.
This group participates in both Mariposa Foundation activities in Cabarete, and Peace Corps Chicas Brillantes activities and conferences. The girls visit with the Mariposas in Cabarete, making new friends, getting free dental and general health care, and fundraising at the Mariposa Christmas Fair. This winter, three of the girls traveled to a regional conference for Chicas Brillantes at an ecolodge in San Cristobal. They were among 50 girls from the Eastern part of the country, who met to learn more about women’s rights, gender equality, health (including HIV/AIDS), career planning, and much more. They also made art projects, swam in the pool and played sports.
The Mariposas Brillantes mission is to empower and educate young women to make healthy life decisions, including career and family planning.
The Mariposas Brillantes vision is for a society with gender equality in which women have equal opportunities and access to education, healthcare and information, and positive role models.
The goals for our Mariposas Brillantes group is for each girl to: