Dominican Republic

Paella, snacks, sangrias and flamenco on behalf of the children of Villa Caoba

This post is also available in: Spanish

On Friday, March 15th, friends of the Fundación Lirio del Valle got together for a wonderful afternoon on behalf of the children of Villa Caoba. Inge Demyttenaere hosted a beautiful get together at Toronjas #7 in Casa de Campo, mixing Spanish culture with a great cause.

As soon as we walked into Inge’s delightful home we were swept away by the rhythms of traditional Spanish music and welcomed by the hostess herself. A table was set with many delicious snacks such as Spanish egg tortillas, nachos, cheese, spicy shrimp, and much more. Many of the wonderful members of the Casa de Campo community enjoyed their afternoon snack out on the terrace accompanied by sangria, wine, or a refreshing cocktail as they learned more about the organization. Villa Caoba is a small community within La Romana where Fundación Lirio del Valle helps provide schooling and feeding to children ages 3-13, contributing to their physical and intellectual development.

It wasn’t long before a couple of steaming paella trays prepared at Iberia in La Romana were brought in. Anna Maria Plà, the founder of the foundation, invited everybody to grab a plate and eat. The seafood paella was delicious! Full of fresh shrimps, clams, mussels, octopus, it was cooked to perfection. Dessert was also set up in the main table: tres-leche, flan, and a mouthwatering Volteado de Piña (Upside-down pineapple cake) baked by Dolly Esteban, one of the foundation’s sponsors.

Dolly also brought in some musical entertainment for the event – the flamenco group of the Club Naco in Santo Domingo. The group entertained the attendees with grace and elegance as they danced to the flamenco rhythms and were even joined in by Fatima Renedo, popular community member, artist, and dancer. Towards the end of the evening, they changed the pace and danced to merengue and were joined by some of the more enthusiastic guests on the dance floor for the last few songs.

A raffle was held of beauty products by Halka, a Dominican company that has been a loyal supporter of the cause that sponsors several children. The air quickly filled with the Casa de Campo ladies laughter and excitement as they won several of the bags filled with products! 

All funds for the organization are raised through contributions from sponsors, voluntary donations, charitable auctions, concerts and more, and are used entirely for schooling and educational activities. If you would like to donate, learn more or even meet the children of Villa Caoba, you can contact Anna Maria, Dolly, or Evangelina to go with them on Saturdays where they spend time with the children, prepare lunch with the volunteers, and fun activities for all.

The following gallery of photos was taken by Dariana Soriano during the event for the children of Villa Caoba, hosted by Inge Demyttenaere, last Friday, March 15th:


Fundación Lirio del Valle LogoThe Fundacion Lirios del Valle aims to educate the children of Villa Caoba, provide them with clothing, food, school supplies and toys. The foundation currently has 120 girls and boys enrolled in its program. A number of these children have been sponsored by kind donors, who pay between USD$29 and USD$43 a month to provide meals, after-school assistance and recreational activities as well as school equipment, instruction and uniform.


Anna Maria Plà Pujal, Founder (809) 742-7247

Dolly Esteban: (809) 330-7644

Evangelina Uckert: (809) 523-8015

Email: [email protected]


Facebook: Amigos de villa Caoba

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