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Simply Smiles provides bright futures for children, families, and communities. The organization partners with populations in need to create physical and emotional environments where suffering is alleviated and from which local leaders can emerge.

Simply Smiles blog

Follow our blog and read insights from Simply Smiles staff, volunteers and other individuals whose lives are affected by our work!

Naugatuck on the Reservation: Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Timothy Nurnberger

Today was an exciting third day in La Plant.  For Olivia and myself today’s schedule was different from our usual schedule while here in La Plant.  We had the chance to go to Pierre, which is off the Reservation, to take a trip to Walmart with some of the people of La Plant!  With Josh as our driver we were bound to run in to at least one exciting event.  And according to Josh himself, seeing a herd of cows almost blocking the road was this exciting event.  But unlike Josh, I don’t find cattle too exciting.  What I found exciting was getting the chance to get to know a little girl named Sadie.  She made the hour and a half bus ride seem like ten minutes.  Her laughter filled the bus when I made a funny face, and soon enough she joined along, mocking my faces.  I will assure you Sadie’s faces were much more adorable than my own. Once we arrived back to the Community Center it was time for camp where I spent the majority of my time painting with three year old Emily.  When she thought we ran out of paper she didn’t let that stop her, she quickly substituted paper with a paper towel.  It worked out surprisingly well, at least in her eyes.

Following camp was town-wide BINGO night!  A favorite among many in La Plant!  Many people were lucky prize winners of gift cards, DVDs, and flowers!  All in all today was quite the productive and eventful third day in La Plant.

- Melissa Sherwood



Eighteen hours of traveling in cars, planes, and buses to get us to La Plant. So far the days have been productive but tiring, fun but trying and overall amazing. Being a returnee this year, I have noticed that many things have remained the same but also a wide variety of things that are different. The kids are phenomenal and its always our pleasure to work and play with each one. The work projects are always great because we are able to put ourselves to work to insure the betterment of others lives. So far, we have worked on the latrines, a brand new compost bin, a sign, the book corner, organizing the storage unit and much more. There are always new skills to learn and something to be done. From here on out the week will most likely continue to challenge us physically and emotionally, but that being said I am genuinely looking forward to experiencing what the next four days entail.

- Olivia Green