Volunteer Betty Garber teaches students how to fold origami frogs.
Betty Garber, Santa Cruz Library Project Volunteer:Up, up and away to Belize! The last Monday in December my husband, 15 other volunteers and I were flying to Belize City from different parts of the U.S. Some had arrived prior to us, but all of us had suitcases packed with work clothes, tools, materials for enrichment activities for children, and selections of books to put on the shelves of the Library we were going to help construct. We were keen to meet and visit with the people of Punta Gorda, and Santa Cruz, absorb the culture and take the enhancement trips our leaders had planned. Imagine, visiting a Mayan ruin or snorkeling in a marine preserve without programming by National Geographic!
One of the juicy asides concerned the local internet cafe. Zola and Sara had gone there to contact their families and tell them about the building experience. They were stopped by a man who apologized for overhearing their conversation. He explained that he was from Canada and, belonged to an organization that had collected a number of books. They would be interested in donating the books for the Library. The "Book Man" gave Zola a contact address to share and they parted. I hope this turns out to be the blessing of more books for the school at Santa Cruz.
Volunteer Mackenze Webber in Santa Cruz.
Mackenze Webber, Age 16, Santa Cruz Library Project Volunteer:Going into this trip, I has absolutely no idea what to expect, I knew it was going to be challenging work, but I didn't understand how moving that work would be. I was also uncertain about the group, since I was one of the youngest members. In the end, I learned and shared so much with the other volunteers and realized anyone who was adventurous enough to participate would be a blast to work with.
The site in Santa Cruz was AMAZING and all the positive energy of working towards one goal is pretty powerful. To so closely impact a village like Santa Cruz will give everyone a reality check that will shape the rest of their lives. It was quite a journey and I can't wait for the next adventure!