Archive for December 2010

CCI’s Service for Aid in Motion   Leave a comment

Service for Aid is CCI’s unique way of implementing long-lasting change through the delivery of humanitarian aid.  CCI uses your donations to provide meaningful incentives for people who participate in CCI programming.  Our first incentive was given to a local baseball team in the form of partial support for its entrance fee into a local baseball tournament.  In order to earn their incentive, the players participate in a community service project and CCI’s Youth Literacy Intervention Project.  The team members helped to carry donated desks from a local school to the CCI community center (about a half-mile walk).  The boys are also enthusiastic about reading the biography of Albert Pujols in their CCI reading group.  By offering struggling community citizens short-term rewards for their service and capacity building, CCI awaits the long-term sustained impacts which will arise from individuals and the community reaching their potential.

CCI is working with local schools to identify candidates for literacy groups, and is working with the local city government to coordinate essential community service projects.  CCI is looking to you for support as we launch these change provoking projects.  Happy Holidays!



Posted December 21, 2010 by anglynnbennett in Uncategorized

Heavy Suitcases & Empty Pocket   1 comment

Thirteen, I counted thirteen stamps from the Dominican Republic in my passport, and as I write I realize that I had a government issued Peace Corps passport from 2004 to 2006; so from 2007 to 2010, I’ve arrived thirteen times to Las Americas Airport in Santo Domingo.  That also means that I have stuffed at least thirty-nine pieces of luggage to the weight limit with donated items and prayed thirteen times that I wouldn’t have to pay the excess weight fee for my bags.

When I arrived to the American Airlines counter at Denver International Airport on December 7th, I knew I had two HEAVY suitcases.  I had learned two nights before that there was an embargo on extra baggage to Latin America during Christmas; only two bags.  My dad helped me lug my luggage to the counter and we waited with interest to see the final weigh-in.  Fifty-two and seventy-four!  We rearranged a few items and added some more weight to my super-carry-on, making it about a forty-five pounder.

Why such heavy bags you ask?  This time, I was transporting in my suitcases 222 donated books, two donated laptops, and hundreds of donated clothing items.  Why?  When people donate items, I can see them in the hands, or on the bodies of people in Consuelo.  Knowing the needs of individuals makes it hard to resist stuffing an extra t-shirt or book into a piece of luggage.

Knowing the needs of individuals and the community is also what keeps me traveling with empty pockets.  When I explain to friends in the US that there is intermittent electricity and water in my apartment, or that I take bucket-baths with cold water, many can’t understand why I wouldn’t stay in the comfortable United States and earn a dignified salary.  I guess I realize that the people of the population I intend to help have empty pockets too, and while mine may be void of money, theirs, currently, are void of opportunity.  This is what I hope Community Connection International can change.

This Christmas, CCI asks you in the spirit of giving, to consider the contents of your pockets to see if you can help connect humanity to its potential. CCI is trying to launch literacy courses, community service projects, and job preparation courses in January.  Your donations transfer into opportunity in the pockets and lives of the less fortunate.  Please donate today at

Posted December 12, 2010 by anglynnbennett in Uncategorized