Tuesday, November 8, 2011


World class lunch-mine.

Some metal. At a site we were called to today.

We arrived at the location to see a woman step out of a tarp shelter with no shirt, only a bra and undies, and proceed to bathe herself (how Salvie), then three more people showed up in the next 5 minutes while we waited for her to get decent. Of the 4 people none were the person we were looking for, they all assured us they were not homeless and did not want or need our help...ok.

New World Roth

I have been back from the Peace Corps for 9 months now.

Since then I have had some crazy times, some even revil the craziness of El Salvador: which brings me to the point of this post-changing the substance of this blog.

After a slew of crazy jobs, I finally have one full time job that I have been working for about 2 months. I drive or ride around Queens with my coworker, looking for homeless people to house, and or responding the 311 calls.

Everyday there is always somekind of craziness.

I can't disclose any personal information about clients, so any names or places I might use are all changed or fictional.

The primary substance of this blog will be photos, like fiber in a diet to help keep it regular.


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Help me!

Hey all!

So as you know I have won a grant from World-Connect to realize this chicken project. What you might not realize is that in November someone robbed my house of $600 that was for the chicken project. At this point we have used all the rest of the money that we won. The money will go to buying food for the chickens until the 11th of April when the chickens will hopefully start laying eggs, and the people in the project can start selling the eggs to offset or pay for the cost of the feed.

If you want to help! You can make you tax deductible donation at…


Select to donate to World-Connect (on the right side under ‘donations options’)

On the donation page under “How did you hear about us?”
Select “family or friend”And write “Matthew Roth”

Sunday, December 12, 2010

They live!

Well it has almost been a week since we brought the baby chickens back to my community. Everything went swimmingly the day I went to pick them up. I meet the man from the ministry of agriculture in the morning and with only a slight delay and two other errands he needed to run we got to the meeting point with the delivery car a few minutes before they did. We loaded the 500 one day old chickens into the cab of the truck and started home (after of course paying some bills for a friend of the driver). Every time we went over a little bump or went around a corner there would be a chorus of peeping from the birds. We distributed the 500 birds between 23 families and today we vaccinate them for the first time, and I have only heard of one dying so far. Which actually might not be a good thing since I was calculating that at least 15% would die, hopefully there will be enough food to keep them alive until they start laying eggs!

Sunday, December 5, 2010


Well I got 3 minutes to tell it all.

Tomorrow the chicken project starts for real.

500 baby chicks will be arriving.

I just finished buying the stuff to make heat lamps for all of the little preciouses.

The most optimistice estimate I have heard is half will die. I hope not. I could look like the gingo I am if that happens.

What's more? Somone stole 600 dollars from my house that was for the project. Luckily we have enough to make it through until Feb, hopefully we will have figured something out by then.


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

BRO Camp

Part of being poor, is staying put. When you have limited resources traveling is pretty low priority. If you don’t travel then you probably also always sleep in your own house. Last February me and two other PCVs (Peace Corps Volunteers) were in a gym getting huge and talking about the value of camps that PCVs occasionally put together to take kids out of their communities for a few days and teach them a thing or two while giving them an experience to spend their first night out of the community (not all have never left but the majority). The female volunteers have been holding a girls camp several times a year called ‘GLOW’ camp and we decided we should have a BRO camp to teach about Machismo, what it means to be a man, and STDs. We applied to one NGO for funds and were rejected, but then we applied for VAST funds and were awarded 1000 dollars to hold a camp. VAST funds are allotted to fight HIV/AIDS and all we had to do was teach a little more AIDS education than we had originally planned. We invited a total of 8 PCVs to attend from all sides of the country and to bring 4 boys between the ages 13-16. Together there were 40 of us. This was the 4th camp I have been to. We held it in the workers center on Lago Coatepeque (which is amazing) for two nights three days. In addition to all the educative material was included a mini soccer tournament, bonfire with S’mores, and just lots of fun. The boys were all amazingly well behaved; I can not convey how good these kids are especially the boys I brought. I was so proud of how well they handled everything including the guest speaker (a man who has been living with HIV for 10 months) and one of their parents got all choked up when I told her how proud she should be of her son.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Where Does Meat Come From

I was wondering what this entry would be about all week, but Saturday the topic become as obvious as…something quite obvious.

Don Oscar has papers to live in the United States; he came back to home to my site once last year when his mother died and came back in July this year for the one year anniversary of his mothers death-which is something of a celebration here.

Since he has been back he has told me several times that he would be killing a cow and wanted me to be there to eat it, and I wanted to be there for the whole things; Part of my reason for going was just to get a little closer to the food chain. Last week he told me that ‘this Saturday without doubt we will be killing it.” I was skeptical, but when the day came around…the cow was killed.

I think it’s safe to say I have changed a lot since I have been here. The first time I saw a chicken killed it made me think. When I saw a rabbit get dressed I felt a little wheezy so I was dubious about what my reaction would be to seeing a cow that weighs several hundred pounds getting killed would be.

There are a few people in the town that always do the killing and dressing of animals. ‘Napo’ tied up the cow in front of an audience of mostly kids less than 10. Once on the ground he sharpened his knife said ‘forgive me lord’ then made a hole in its neck and let it bleed to death. The last minute of the cow’s life was the hardest to watch, it mooed very loudly and with anthropomorphizing it too much it seemed scared. When it mooed loudly (sounded more like a scream then a moo) blood flowed more rapidly from the hole in its neck. I’m sure there are more humane was of killing a cow now. Its eyes seemed to change color and it died. Then two grown men, a teenager and myself started to peel the leather off the meat. That was really the only thing I could help with. I was expecting to be much more disgusted than I was. The skin is very tough and we sharpened our knives every few minutes. After it was flayed they worked for about 2 hours getting all the meat off and left the guts and skin for the vultures and dogs.

I was excited to eat grass feed beef, but they cooked it so much I couldn’t taste much more than a normal steak. So did I think about becoming a vegetarian while we were cutting it? For a few seconds I did but it just didn’t seem like a big deal killing it. Maybe it was the presence of kids the whole time who watched with interest at times boredom at others, but I never really felt anything more than a mild sense of gratitude for the meat the cow had given us. Or maybe I’m just a hardened killer now.