Volunteer Spotlight: Kuya

kuyaKuya came to us from British Columbia, Canada, originally from Japan.  Kuya spent about 4 weeks with us, allowing us to get to know him for the gentle, productive, and very intelligent person that he is.

Kuya is an amazing carpenter, and is interested in rustic furniture.  Among the many contributions he made while he volunteered with us, Kuya created a fantastic bench and helped us to complete some of our unfinished furniture.  He also carved a face in one of our totem poles.

In addition, he helped us start our initial attempts to translate the Bosque Village website into Japanese.

We asked Chilino, the volunteer manager, about some of our past volunteers, and how they impressed him during work and also in a social setting.   Thinking back on the first year of volunteers, Kuya stood out in Chilino’s mind as one of the best.  Kuya doesn’t speak Spanish, and Chilino doesn’t speak English; it is a testament to both of them that they were able to connect and communicate without language.  The social difficulty of having to work with people that don’t speak Spanish is difficult for Chilino, and Kuya was, last year, the one exception to this social barrier.  Kuya was extremely easy to work with.  When he was done with a job, he found something else useful to do, and made working at the Bosque easier and more fun for Chilino, for us, and for all the other volunteers and visitors who were here.  I asked one other volunteer at the time what he thought about Kuya leaving, and he replied, “I just don’t know what we’re going to do without him!”

Kuya can be elegant with a chainsaw, was a pleasure to work with, a joy to chat with, and we miss having him around the fires at night.

From left to right: El Gringo, Kuya, Guillermo, Nny

Putting together a bench:

Jenessa and Kuya mixing cob:

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