April 2012 Bottle School Trip

“I can truly say this was the best week of my life! The trip was impactful in so many ways; It allowed me to continue working on improving as a person. I had to be more outgoing, get out of my comfort zone, and make a genuine attempt at improving the lives of others. Having gracious locals share their poignant, vivid accounts of how they risked everything and attempted to gain entry into the US illegally was gripping to me and so many others on this trip. .” I’ve been able to supervise and work alongside people from Africa, Asia, and Europe while I was in the military. Each time I encounter these people and get to know them, it reinforces what I already know. We are more similar than we are different.”

“Connecting with the children was great but personally I felt a very strong connection with the parents and teachers. They made me feel like I was affecting their futures in a positive way for generations to come. ! I didn’t have any expectations from the trip other than wanting to help. Now I’m finding it difficult to do anything without thinking about those humble people. I’m a lot more appreciative for what I have and can’t wait for my next visit, I call it visit because I feel now that I’m coming to see friends and work hand in hand with them.”

“I wanted to be able to make a difference and participate in building a school. I wanted to know what a voluntourism trip was all about, and I honestly feel like it was better than it could ever be marketed. The trip was much more than just building a school…it was changing other people’s lives, giving hope, learning about the culture, history and traditions of the Mayan people and Guatemala, getting to know the children and families, and supporting other non profits and co-ops. When I vacation or stay at a nice resort, my favorite part of the trip is to get off the beaten path and get to know the people, culture and their way of living. This trip allowed me to accomplish that on a much deeper level than I could have ever wished for. I really thought was there going to be a lot more physical labor involved (aka building a bottle school) but was pleasantly surprised by the itinerary that had us doing everything I could have imagined!”

“It was much more than I could have ever asked for. Having the opportunity to go into a remote village and make a difference was life changing. I feel I got more out of the trip than I was able to give. I returned to CA with a new view on life, a new purpose and a brighter idea of what is possible.”