1. How has this trip impacted or changed your life?
The trip I took to Costa Rica with my family instilled in me a passion for international medical aid and advocacy. After our volunteer work, we spent our free time the same way the other kids did – playing soccer. I noticed after a day or two that Andre, the son of our Globe Aware guide, didn’t play with everyone. When I asked him why he didn’t want to join in the game, he pointed to the sores on his legs. He explained to me that he used to love soccer, but his doctor had advised him not to play anymore. His doctor was not equipped with the information or technology to diagnose him, much less cure him, and their family didn’t have the money to send him to a different doctor. I knew there were problems like this everywhere in the world, but coming from the US where we have such advanced health care and resources, it was strange for me to see Andre in this situation. It upset me tremendously, and I started to think about how I could change this, not only in Andre’s situation, but in other places as well. I did research and found the name for what I was interested in: Global Health. I was a sophomore in high school then, and I am now attending Villanova University, majoring in Political Science and minoring in Global Health. I hope to one day work with an organization like Doctors Without Borders or the United Nations to bring health care to other countries.
2. What was your favorite memory?
My favorite memory was teaching English to the students at the school in the village. The children were all full of energy and so eager to learn. My brother and I loved playing games with them - especially kickball! - and it strengthened the friendships we had already made with some of the kids.
3. What was the food like?
The food was DELICIOUS! All of the meals that the families cooked for us were a little different and we loved them all. The fruit juices were my favorite!
4. Do you feel your project was meaningful?
The project I did with my family was renovating one of the tanks that supplied the village with fresh water. My brothers and I have participated in many fundraisers with H2O For Life and we understand how vital having a clean water supply can be. We definitely found our volunteer work to be important and meaningful.
5. Would you do it again?
I am definitely planning on doing another Globe Aware trip in the near future, probably to a place that I haven’t been before like India or Peru. It’s a great way to mix travel and service. Everything about our trip to Costa Rica was wonderful! Thank you for giving us the opportunity to go on such a rewarding family vacation - keep doing what you're doing!
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