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lowermainlandgirl April 19th, 2007 11:42 AM

Gifts for local children??
:-? Has anyone ever brought small gifts for the children to give out when they leave the ship in port? I am getting off the boat in Ensenada Mexico and was thinking about bringing some scented felt pens!

Washable...I am a mum!! LOL

Just wondering if anyone has done this before or had a good idea of what they might really like!

Thanks :?:

dina April 19th, 2007 12:49 PM

When you dock, your ship is behind the local customs area. I never docked anywhere where "locals" much less children are hovering around to greet you. After you leave the area and go town maybe you'll see some kids but remember every place is very use to tourists... don't get your pockets picked when your trying to give the cute litte tyke something.

freedman8 April 19th, 2007 01:26 PM

Hey I was just there a couple of months ago and my advice and it might seem harsh but it's true...the minute you give them something you will have ALL of the kids around you...Ensenada is a nice place but there are kids everywhere selling you gum...just be aware !

seadog2 April 19th, 2007 04:23 PM

I don't think the issue will be "what can I give the kiddies" it will be what the kiddies will be trying to sell you. We were there in March and we had our hands full fending off the vendors. We have been to Ensenada several times and it's all ways the same. Still it's a fun place to be. Enjoy the time while you are there.

P.S. That is a nice justure. I believe in a giving heart.

michellet1959 April 19th, 2007 05:17 PM

I would also caustion you against "giving" things to the local kids. Thiefs lhang around touristy places, especially in areas where the perceived "rich Americans" go on vacation. Someone seeing you give away things might think you have a lot of money (therefore you can afford to give things to total strangers) and you may find yourself being followed or worse.

RocHed11 April 19th, 2007 05:20 PM

Everyone is correct, there will be scores of vendors and kiddies selling Chicklets in cellophane like 3 or 4 to a pack for a nickle. The first time I was in Ensenada there was a real cute 3-4 year olf girl with dirty face, I tried to give her like 5 dollars just to help her family out and she just threw it down on the ground because it wasn't a coin. It's actually kinda depressing seeing those poor children. On a lighter note, Gold must be pretty cheap there cuz one of my shipmates bought a Rolex for $25. :D


lowermainlandgirl April 19th, 2007 09:30 PM

Ok I understand your comments but I have been in Mexico before and I am fully aware of the children. I do not believe in buying the chicklets. Last time my sister gave them Canadian pins and also brought a few Canadian hats.

We always give them out on our return so we have a way out!

I guess that is why Canadians are always welcomed so warmly around the world!!

Just wondering if there was anybody that knew of something they really needed or would be a huge hit with the kids.

cozzette1 April 20th, 2007 12:45 AM

I guess I will have to dissagree, I always take gifts when I go. The times we have done land based Mexico trips and are on the beach we take things like ball caps. A couple of years ago a friend of mine was the city building inspector and he sent us to Puerto Vallarta with about 30 hats with names of various busnesses printed on them. We passed them out and one man said it was the only gift he would have for his son for Christmas. It was so humbling. We have taken tootsie pops, gum, tooth brushes, things from the dollar store like stickers, we have taken Taco Bell Dogs, and cheap and small toys, this may only work from the beach where you have time to sit and not at the port where you are being besiged by the selling masses. If you want to take something, see about one of the orphanges locally and see what the needs are.
Sometimes when we go, our dentist will send a box of toothbrushes and tooth paste to take down to the orphanage.
On a humorous note, those hats, we would see them all over town [ because of the logos ] and mostly they were on different heads, so no telling what they bartered them for, oh well, I still felt good :wink:

lowermainlandgirl April 20th, 2007 12:54 AM

:D Thanks so much for the imput!!

I am not the only one then??

The first time I went to Mexico I was so humbled by the third world country side of things when I left the "resort community" making $8.00 an day I said I would always try to do something nice.

I am smart enough not to start handing stuff out to who ever as soon as I walk off the ship but... I think you can be safe and really enjoy yourself!

Toothbrushes ect is a GREAT idea!

I just want something fun! Nice to give back, EH!! Canadian Joke!!! *lol*

seadog2 April 20th, 2007 04:39 PM

I guess if you wanted to give something away to the kids and you feel ok doing this then that's fine. I have always felt that since tourism is one of the main sources of income there DW and I try to purchase some things. With so many vendors there it is my impression that what is needed is money. So we try to buy things to help with their livelyhood and we are not trying to singlehandedly turn the economy around. Just to help out a bit. :)

lowermainlandgirl, what do you mean when you say "we always give them out on our return so we have a way out"?

lowermainlandgirl April 20th, 2007 05:32 PM

]lowermainlandgirl, what do you mean when you say "we always give them out on our return so we have a way out"?

You will get surrounded as soon as you start giving things out!! :shock:

So we will do it when we are returing to the ship!

I totally agree with supporting the locals by buying items when in port :D

I think a guy I met selling silver in Mexico while on a trip there last year is still living comfortably off all the stuff I bought off of him LOL

cozzette1 April 20th, 2007 06:27 PM

that is too true, we also buy a ton of stuff and if you saw our house you would think you were in PV.
It is tricky giving things out without being insulting to the parents and the kids that are selling won't take anything from you, they are there to sell. We usually try and give a few things if we are on the beach and the lady who braides hair is there with her child or the sellers have their kids with them. It is more of a personal gesture than just randomly handing things out. What we love to do is take things to trade, that really makes it fun. I get stuff I want and they get things they don't normally have in their stores or can't afford. Brownie mixes are a huge hit.
A few years a go my kind hearted Mother took dog biscuits because she was so sad for all the homeless dogs. :(

Luanne Russo April 20th, 2007 07:01 PM

Jamaica is another place to take kids stuff. They love things like school supplies, and tee shirts. If you are taking a private excursion, e-mail them before you leave, and ask if they know of a group that can benefit from your kindness.

RocHed11 April 20th, 2007 08:02 PM

This post is making me think of why not give a donation to a local charity. I bet if you/we looked hard enough we could find a legit one to donate to or even a medical clinic, dentist office, food bank...etc. We should make a point of it. Nothing huge unless you want, But I bet we all could spare $20 for a good cause.


seadog2 April 21st, 2007 12:27 AM

Good point. Sounds like Mission work to me. I will remember that.
lowermainlandgirl, thanks for the explanation. Enjoy your cruise. 8)

RocHed11 April 21st, 2007 01:25 AM

I know this is a pipe dream but what if it was set up in each port where everyone gave like 1-20 dollars. Just think of the good will we would have. I believe the country would be very aprecietive. The only concerns I have is not lining the pockets of some middle man


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