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Arrived in Kithoka after another full day

The group began their day visiting the Sheldrake Elephant Orphanage and the Giraffe Center in Nairobi before making the drive to Meru. They have now arrived in Kithoka and settled into IPI’s Amani Children’s Home where they will work and train for a majority of their days in Kenya. Shawn and Fay report that the…

Machakos

Today we went to a Kenyan track meet in the town of Machakos. Our running coach for this trip, Abel, grew up in the area and ran races there when he was younger. Everyone was extremely welcoming as most of the Kenyans have been. Numerous people came up to shake our hands when we entered…

Safe Arrival in Nairobi

After a long direct flight, the group arrived safely in Nairobi. Immediately after their arrival, they had the opportunity to meet with officials and professional runners from a national Kenyan running association. In the days ahead, they plan to attend a running competition and visit an elephant orphanage and a giraffe preserve before heading to…

Today Was Humbling

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Today we went to the Mexican side of Friendship Park. We worked with Daniel, the founder of Friends of Friendship Park. Our group pulled weeds, reorganized the compost bin, and fixed the park grounds. It was a real eye opening experience because on the weekends the US visitors are allowed to have contact between…

Diverse Perspectives about Friendship Park

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Today we started out day at a church in Jacumba, California. After a short breakfast, we proceeded to the US side of the border in San Diego to visit Friendship Park. We talked to U.S. Border Patrol Agent Gonsalez who mans the Friendship Park section of the border. We learned about the various challenges…

The Border Course Has Begun!

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]This afternoon, a majority of the students began their course with a trip to Chicano Park where they explored the history of the border region and its unique culture through the prominent murals in the park. After the final student arrived, the group headed to the small border town of Jacumba, California, where they…

The Final Day of Service

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Our final day of service was spent working with Forgotten Harvest for a second day, this time at their farm, which sits on over 95 acres of donated land in Fenton, MI, about an hour outside of Detroit. We spent the morning harvesting collard greens and preparing the watermelon fields for cultivation. During lunch…

Forgotten Harvest

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Today brought us to our third non-profit partner of our trip, Forgotten Harvest. We spent the day re-packaging food that would otherwise have gone to waste, and putting together food for lunches. When we got back to the hostel we had the opportunity to talk to Emma, an SStS Detroit alumna who lives in…

The Tumaini Center and the Bell Building

We started our day at Neighborhood Service Organization’s Tumaini Center, learning about the services available to Detroit’s homeless population and their “housing first” approach. We then headed to Bell House, which provides permanent, supportive housing for homeless adults, where we prepared and served lunch and played bingo with some of the residents. Patrick – At…

SStS Tibet Prepares for Takeoff

After a full day of travel for many of the students and the instructors, the SStS group assembled in LAX, made their way through security, and are now beginning some of their orientation activities at the gate. Despite the late night departure, everyone is in good spirits and excited for the adventure ahead.

A Full First Day

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]We just received an update from Sarah and Jim as their first full day in Phnom Penh came to an end. In order to better understand some of the tragic elements of Cambodian history, the group visited the Cheoung Ek Killing Field and the Tol Sleng Prison. In the process, they learned about the…

Touring Phnom Penh

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]After a full day of travels, the group traveling from LA arrived safely and met up with the last two members of this year’s Cambodia team. After checking into their hotel and enjoying their first Cambodian meal, they immediately headed out to explore Phnom Penh with Phiya from CRDT as their guide. After an…

Our List of Questions Grows

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Just as the Panama Canal’s connectivity we would see in 24 hours, the Au Bon Pain of Miami International served as a joining together spot. All 17 of us met up and successfully began our journey together in front of this airport bakery. After making it through security and checking into our flight, we…

The SStS Cambodia Group Is On Their Way

We received a message from Jim and Sarah letting us know that their group is boarding their flight for Hong Kong, so they are on their way to Cambodia. Despite the late night departure, the group is in great spirits. The group of six students from the U.S. will meet the remaining two students in…

Arrived safely

We just received a message from the course instructors. The group arrived early in Panama City, quickly made their way through customs, and will soon be heading to their hostel for the night after a long day of travel.

SStS Panama Prepares for Takeoff

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Despite some unexpected flight changes this morning, all 14 of the students along with Allison, Laura, and McNair arrived in Miami with plenty of time to check in and begin their group orientation activities before their flight departs. For example, this enthusiastic group spent some time journaling about their expectations regarding what lies ahead…

Welcome to the Kenya Running Travel Journal

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]The travel journal will be the place for students to share their experience while traveling. Once the students are on-site, they are asked to post reflections, observations, pictures, stories, poems, and more. Our whole community appreciates the opportunity to be part of the group’s adventure, and as the course comes to an end, each…

Welcome to the Border Travel Journal

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]The travel journal will be the place for students to share their experience while traveling. Once the students are on-site, they are asked to post reflections, observations, pictures, stories, poems, and more. Our whole community appreciates the opportunity to be part of the group’s adventure, and as the course comes to an end, each…

Harvesting Kale for Flint

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Wow, six whole days fly by in an instant! While on other days we have been working in more urban environments, we decided to mix it up today by driving out to Forgotten Harvest’s 100+ acre farm. Once there, we were given instructions on how to properly harvest kale, a plant rich in nutrients…

Small Actions, Great Results

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]As we continue our stay in Detroit, we spent our time productively at Forgotten Harvest where we packaged peppers and sweet potatoes. In the morning, we started to repackage bell peppers, and while we were doing this, there were two people from the local area. When we started to work with them, they were…

A Better Understanding of Homelessness

Today we visited the Bell Building in Highland Park. They focus on housing the homeless before treating their problems/addictions. Their main focuses are alcoholics, drug addicts, people with mental disabilities, and the chronically homeless. One thing that separates their homeless shelter from others is their ability to accept homeless people despite their addictions. Most homeless…

Simple Interactions

Today we started our morning by packaging the food we unwrapped yesterday. We packed boxes until noon. After lunch we went to the Focus: HOPE learning center to help clean the building. When we first entered the center, I was struck by the resoundingly happy welcome we received. The man welcoming us, Keith, was very…

The Importance of Hope

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Today we spent our time volunteering at Focus: HOPE. We started off with a tour followed by an orientation. We then delivered food to senior citizens and worked in their warehouse. When delivering food, we were able to see the impact that the food boxes make. At one apartment, I noticed that there were…

Thankful To Experience Both

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Today we woke up to air conditioned rooms and the sound of our alarm clocks instead of roosters for the first time in a week. After a good night’s sleep we were ready to embark upon a new journey; this time to the home of the Angkor Wat temples: Siem Reap! The feeling of…

Koh Preah For Dummies

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]* This post was also written last week but not uploaded until today when the group was in Siem Reap with a better internet connection. Part one: Taking a steam bath One may think that steam baths are only available in gyms or spas, but here on Koh Preah, these are nowhere to be…

July 4th on Koh Preah

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]* This post was written last week but not uploaded until today when the group was in Siem Reap with a better internet connection. Our July 4th began with a hearty breakfast of pork, eggs and rice. After rallying our tired bodies, we marched off to the medical clinic, minds set on working on…

Witnessing the Wide Smiles

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]* This post was written on July 6 but not sent until the group returned to Urubamba yesterday. This past week we had the most amazing opportunity to work alongside the community members of Quishuarani (“key-swa-rani”). We faced many challenges including teaching in the lingua-franca of a Quechua Spanish combination, transporting an endless amount…

Arrival in Quishurani

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]* This post was written on July 3 but not sent until the group returned to Urubamba yesterday. Today we woke up with our bags packed ready to roll. After an energetic breakfast we headed outside for some yoga in the sun. Everyone struggled to look as effortless as Ellen. Then we piled into…

Final Reflections

Jack- It’s really sad to see this trip come to a close. It seems like just yesterday we arrived and met each other in Miami. Since then, we’ve made memories and water filters, explored the Andes and the Amazon. Working on our service project was one of the most worthwhile things I’ve ever done. Though…

The Best Feeling in the World

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Written on July 6: Hello or Habari!! It’s Penelope and I am back as journal girl today! This was a long day and we are all exhausted with a capital E. We began the day with some pancakes and hard boiled eggs which was nice because it’s comforting to eat American food once a…

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