Service Learning with Local NGO: Acción Callejera

Programs for this blog post

Leadership & Service in Youth Development

Authored By:

Megan Hoeffler

Participants started the first full day of service at Acción Callejera, an NGO that offers support services that favorably impact the life and environment of children and adolescents at social risk in all their modalities. The institution is located in Calle del Sol, which is nearby the city center of Santiago. They work to create articulations for the promotion and defense of local children’s fundamental rights.


Today, Participants went to a local city center called La Yagüita del Pastor. This city center receives help from Acción Callejera to create meaningful and educational opportunities to kids and families struggling with poverty. Participants first passed out juice and crackers to all the local children.


At the center our kids got to do familiar dances from their childhoods such as the macarena, a conga line, and the duck dance. They also got to learn Dominican children’s songs and dances such as Soy Una Taza, which is about the kitchen cutlery, with signature moves of a tea cup, a knife, a fork, a plate, etc.


Acción Callejera led the group with different movement games, more dancing, and showed an educational video about puberty, explaining the male and female body changes. We then passed out free menstrual products to the girls and for families. This is part of their mission to facilitate programs with comprehensive responses and a rights-based approach that generate sustainable results.


T Borras, who is originally from Barcelona Spain, now living in North Carolina, wrote about their experience. “Compared to the children at Accion Callejera, I’ve lived a very safe and sheltered life. Unlike the kids, I have constant access to food, shelter, education, and support. The kids there have probably been exposed to more violence than me due to living on the streets. To address these problems, the NGO creates safe places for kids to be kids and learn. They observe the children for different behaviors and try to get them to understand and have their rights”.

Participants will have five more service learning opportunities with Acción Callejera. Towards the end of the program, they will create a final project of an actionable proposal with ideas to improve the NGO, based on what they have learned from their Youth Development Workshop classes. Finally, participants will get to see the proposals from their classmates, presented as a Gallery in class. At the end they will vote on the proposals based on four criteria: feasibility, impact, presentation and innovation.