We came.  We saw.  We conquered.

I realize it’s been some time since we last chatted.  Between getting prepared for our spring trip and making sure all of our service learners were prepared, there was barely enough time in the day to sleep!  So, I figured I would just write a short summary of our amazing trip!  These students ROCKED IT!

The Players:

Grace:  Grace is an education major at UNG.  She was an amazing asset to our team and vital in our literacy lab at our after school program.  Grace took her job very seriously, making sure to do hands on flash card drills with students, as well as “teacher time” when students were struggling in their computer program to progress literacy skills.  Grace was always smiling and laughing and generally awesome to be around.  She embraced all the things we did in the 10 days we went NON-STOP.  Grace showed that her name was the perfect name for her, as she handled herself with amazing poise and GRACE.  Thank you so much GRACE for your contribution to this trip.  Your future students are SO lucky to have you as a teacher!!

Josie:  Josie is also an education major at UNG.  Josie and her BFF Sydney (next up) were in charge of our team building skills module.  They had so much fun getting the after school kids to learn the value of working together by doing fun team building games that showed them they had a community of peers to rely on.  Josie also stepped out of her comfort zone on a couple of occasions eating new foods and jumping into crystal clear turquoise waters full of sharks!!  That’s right, she didn’t want to… but she did.  And that’s what these trips are all about!  We were so proud of her for doing everything with such courage and bravery but also loved every minute of getting to know who she was as a person.  We happen to think she will be an amazing educator!

Sydney: (Josie’s BFF) Sydney, also an education major (SURPRISE!) at UNG.  Sydney along with Josie got to hang out with some of the cutest kids in all the land every day doing the team building games.  Also, Sydney as well as the rest of the service learners got to be in the classroom at Unity school during the day with all of these beautiful babies and every time we saw Sydney in the classroom she looked as if she had been there for twenty years!  Such a natural.  Sydney also stepped out of her comfort zone in a HUGE way!  Sydney was not too keen on zip lining but because Josie went swimming with sharks thought it was only fair to dangle herself from a metal wire and glide through the jungle.  She ended up looking all professional and junk by the end.  Sydney showed us all that she will use those “stepping out of her comfort zone” moments in the classroom and her students will be so fortunate to have her as a teacher!  Sydney was awesome!  

Karia:  Quiet and reserved Karia.  She didn’t have much to say but when she did you better know it was either important… or… sarcastic.  We loved Karia.  Karia was a health sciences major and we think she’s going to be AWESOME in her career field!  She’s a person on a mission.  Someone who knows what she wants and came to get it.  Karia was our snack specialist, showing all of our cuties how to make fun, nutritious snacks every day.  She did FANTASTIC!!  The kids loved her and will forever remember her!  Karia also stepped out of her comfort zone on a few different occasions, swimming with sharks and conquering her fear of heights…well maybe…. Karia was an amazing asset to our team.  We know we will see her doing big things in the future!!

Annalia:  Annalia was LITERALLY (she loves this word) a pleasure to have on our team!   Annalia is a Human Services major at UNG and also my intern for the spring semester.  She did a fantastic job floating to all the modules in our after school program helping everyone where they needed help.  During the day she helped out in the classroom at Unity School doing an amazing job.  Annalia LITERALLY stepped out of her comfort zone in a different way than most of our students.  We are very proud to say that Annalia typically doesn’t put herself out there with others and may sometimes come across as shy.  This trip changed that.  Annalia found the simplicity in putting herself out there and the value in doing so because she made lifelong friends with the participants on this trip.  Annalia also was on a quest to find the best ice cream in Belize…. we still don’t know who won!!  She may just have to go back to find out! LITERALLY!

Nycole:  Nycole was a team player but also the owner of her own non-profit organization called “Paint Your Story.”  Nycole was essential to our art program and gave the students in our after school program an outlet to paint their story!  The students we serve can sometimes have very stressful lives.  Their realities are much different that children’s realities here in the U.S.  so Nycole’s program allowed them to relieve some stress and show their artistic side!  Nycole was quiet but soaked it all in embracing the experience of working with these beautiful souls.  She decided this needed to be at least a once a year thing and I for one am excited to see where our collaboration takes us!  Nycole was a rock star!

Nicholette and Josh:  Nicholette and Josh were our resident pre-teens that came along with moms (Jennifer and Nycole) to help out in any capacity they could.  Josh helped mom (Nycole) with all things painting and in the classroom at Unity School and Nicholette was Karia’s right hand man in the snack module.  Nicholette (12) and Josh (11) were super awesome in getting things done and we think they have a bright future in life changing and service to the world!  What a great experience they brought back with them!  

We just wanted to give a shout out to this crew because they were real rock stars.  We are always sad to see our crews go, but knowing how bonded this particular crew got, I think we will be seeing alot out of them in the future!  

The only thing left to do is watch a couple of our video’s to see how our service learning trips work I’ll just leave those here for you to take a look at!  

It’s been fun chatting.  Until next time…



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