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Instructor Update

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]* This update was written yesterday but sent to us today. The group has returned to Kangding and will soon be back in Chengdu.  Now that the project phase has ended, we as instructors have been reflecting on our project in Yolonshi. To start, the experience was incredible. The homestay was intense and conditions…

Reflections on Koh Preah

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]*The group is now in Siem Reap touring Angkor Wat. These posts were written while they were working on the project last week but not sent until the group had wifi again today. Day 1- Today was our first work day on Koh Preah. We worked at the primary school, laying down cement. First we…

Hard at Work

Hi!! This is Zoe, and I’m thrilled to be journal girl for today. This morning, we walked back out to Tirji Eco Centre to begin our full day of work. We made an “assembly line” up the steep hill and passed giant rocks up to the top, where they’ll be used for the foundation of…

Our Village Tour

July 2 (this post was written last week but just sent to the SStS office today) Hello my name is Brianna; and I am honored to share my experience during this trip so far. Today was an amazing day! Us girls got to sleep in for an extra hour, we ate a great breakfast, and…

An Amazing Beginning

Hello all! This is Penelope and it’s my day to be journal girl! Well, on June 29 we arrived in Nairobi after long days of traveling. Our many plane rides consisted of multiple crying children, broken air conditioning, and broken televisions. Even though those things were not as fun, the planes allowed all of the…

Shouting for Joy

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Today the group continued their acclimatization, spent time planning environmental education lessons, and toured Urubamba. They are settling in well and looking forward to beginning our work in the mountains tomorrow with a trip to the Llama Pack Project’s pasture. You’ll hear from everyone in the group over the course of the next few…

Something Very Different and Magnificent

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]This post was written a couple days before we received it. The group has now moved to the village of Yolonshi to start their project work.  Today we started the day by walking across the street to Abu’s house to visit a 1300 year old monastery. We got white scarves*, offered them to the…

Closing Celebration in Mukli

* This is another post written before the group left Mukli and began their trek but that we did not receive until a couple days after it was written. Hello everyone! My name is Zella and I will be telling the story of day 10. As a bonus, we got to sleep in! Our group…

Tiospaye

Since the beginning of our trip we have been welcomed with open arms by the Native American community at the healing camp. The healing camp encompassed the general meaning of tiospaye, which roughly means extended family. We have been able to interact and play with many of the children. The kids greeted us with smiling…

Our Last Day in Mukli

* This post was written before the group finished their project. They have now left Mukli to begin several days of trekking in the Solukhumbu region before returning to the Kathmandu area in the middle of the week. What’s up guys! Day 9 was our last day of work in Mukli. Before we started working…

Reflections on Puerto Salinas

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]*These reflections were written when the group returned to Rurre after completing their work in Puerto Salinas. They just finished a day in La Paz and are currently headed to visit Isla del Sol. Kiely As Nicola, Sarah, Joselo and I started walking into the school on the last day with the community, kids…

Life in Mukli

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Hey! Its Sydney on day 8 of our trip, and it couldn’t be better. This morning we were able to finish digging the trenches for the school’s foundation. The school has come so far already, I can’t believe it. Though with only a few days left here in Mukli we won’t be able to…

We Are Really in Tibet Now

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Today our group woke up at a hotel in Kangding. We ate breakfast in a restaurant; the food was the same items we’ve been eating for both lunch and dinner as well. Boss Hog (our driver) and Tenpa (one of our Tibetan guides) drove us to a monastery in Kangding. This monastery was one…

Closing Reflections from the New Orleans Crew

Anna: Overall this trip taught me a lot about community service and trying things out of my comfort zone. I’ve learned about gardening and as well as the importance of teamwork. At first, I was very nervous about coming on this trip, but now that it’s almost over, I realized that I’m going to miss…

Curiosity

Since we arrived, our questions have brought us closer to the people who work here, such as Stan and Brea. Brea, a young Lakota woman, has taught us about her language, how to pray for our food, and more about her Lakota background. Stan taught us about his history and ancestors. His mom is from…

Chengdu to Kangding

In the U.S., we go through every day not thinking about what we have. We go by day to day eating what we want, drinking what we please and petting animals without suspicion. In Tibet all of these luxuries are non-existent. Every day here has had new experiences, some weird and unordinary, but all extremely…

Preserving Endangered Native Irises

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Today the SStS group worked with the Greater NOLA Master Gardeners Organization and in my opinion, I learned a lot about planting and especially leveling! My partner and I had to level out cinder blocks so that the workers could create pools to hold certain plants. Other volunteers in my group organized and labeled…

Unexpected lessons

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text letter_spacing=””]Picture this: Hundreds of scooters with families stacked on top, fluorescent lights lining the streets, street vendors lining the roads, moisture so thick you feel as though you’re swimming in the air, a complete lack of personal space. Welcome to Cambodia! After Cambodia’s warm welcome, we sleepily ventured through ornate royal palaces and ate…

Experiencing New Orleans

Today was our first full day in NOLA. We did a LOT of activities today, but all were worth it. We started the day by cooking some breakfast at Common Ground Relief. We then exposed ourselves to the real New Orleans. We started with a Catholic Gospel Mass at St. Augustine Church. It was truly…

The Trek to Mukli

Hello parents! My name is Luke and today I will be documenting our wild adventure here on day 4. The day started early, per usual, when we packed up our bags as we were about to venture in a 10 hour trek to Mukli. We ate a delicious breakfast comprised of pancakes, eggs and rice…

Our First School Visit

Hello! This is Nicholas, and I’m in charge of recounting day 3 of our trip. Today, we slept in a bit and had breakfast around 7:30, although some of us (Chesley) woke up early for a frigid shower. We had tea and hot chocolate, which was followed by a hearty meal of oatmeal and toast….

The World Around Us

Today was our first full day in Bolivia, and we went straight to work on the water filters. As we carried the 160 pound concrete filters, I was excited and a little bit anxious of what’s to come. We have a lot of work ahead of us, installing these filters in indigenous communities, and I’m…

The Simple Things

When we first arrived in Kenya a few days ago, I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect. I was with people I had never met, in a place I had never been, surrounded by things I had never seen. Arriving at the children’s home, none of that seemed to matter to anyone. Everyone, regardless of…

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