- Listing Type: Summer Programs
- Destination: Panama, Honduras
- Program Delivery: Residential
- Provided By: Independent Provider
- Session Start: February, March, April, July
- Session Length: One Week
- Entering Grade: 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, PG, College
- Gender: Coed
- Category: Community Service
- Sub-Categories: Leadership, Youth Outreach
- Selective: No
- Ages: 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19+, 19
- Minimum Cost: > $3,000
- Credit Awarded: No
School the World is a non-profit organization committed to improving the quality of education in the developing world. We offer student service learning trips for high school students interested in making a difference abroad. Our service program is unique in that students contribute to a larger ongoing mission. Find out more!
School the World's Global Citizenship Program supports infrastructure growth & programming costs while providing an inspiring service experience for U.S. high school & college students.
· Fosters a mutually beneficial experience for all participating parties; the children and parents in the community as well as the students from the United States.
· Motivates students to not take their education for granted, returning home eager to take advantage of all the opportunities available within their schools and local communities.
· Provides training in successful fundraising strategies including time management, creating an elevator pitch, solicitation letters, effective outreach and the importance of acknowledging each person who supported their mission to fund a school.
· Promotes leadership through the World Changer Student Leadership Program, where returning students apply to become a Trip Leader and serve as support to first-time World Changers as well as working closely with School the World staff members before, during and following the trip.
· Empowers students to become global citizens and ambassadors within their local communities, often teaching younger students about global literacy & education · Inspires high school students to study international development, public health and education in college. Many continue on to acquire jobs in the non-profit or humanitarian aid sector.
ABOUT THE TRIP: Each group that travels funds and participates in the final construction phase of a new school building and/or playground during their journey of discovery. Students spend the majority of their week in the Western Highlands of Guatemala working on the project and interacting with the children, their parents and the teachers as they form strong bonds through mutual learning. We also believe cultural exposure and understanding is an important part of our program. During their trip, students experience the wonders of the Mayan world, visit the Spanish colonial city of Antigua, and barter in the largest open air market in Central America.
Throughout the trip, our World Changers begin to open their eyes and minds to the deep and complicated causes underlying poverty and gender discrimination prevalent in rural communities. They walk away with first-hand insights of economic realities that force mothers and fathers to send their young children across treacherous borders. More importantly, they experience the power and influence of education in ordinary people’s lives.
IMPACT: "The biggest takeaway I got from this trip was that you do not need material items to be happy when you are surrounded by people who you love and who love you. When you do something that you enjoy and are with the people that you love, all you need is the right mindset & to be grateful & appreciative of what you have"
-World Changer February '19
"The bonds made by everyone on the trip as well as the community are unforgettable and have changed my perspective of the world and my relationship with others."
-World Changer July '18
"Being able to work with and help other people in another culture made me want to pursue careers that will focus on helping other people. I am currently looking at colleges and this trip has given me clarity and focus for the field I want to pursue"
-World Changer July '18
780 U.S. high school students have participated in our Global Citizenship Program
40 Schools Built
29 Playgrounds Built
My experience with School the World was nothing short of incredible. Never before could I have expected a service trip to be so enlightening and moving. This trip not only showed me how much poverty still plagues our world, but also how much I take for granted. Simple everyday things- clean drinking water, going to school, sleeping in my own bed, and never going hungry- were all activities I used to not even think about until I embarked on this trip. I am now a much more appreciative person, who has a much greater awareness for global poverty. School the World allowed me to see firsthand how people in poverty live. They also allowed me to help them, both on a small and large scale. By building the Capuchinas community a new school and playground, we were opening brand new doors for the children of this village. Providing them with the opportunity to learn, play, and potentially move out of their current economic situations gave me a great feeling of satisfaction and joy. I hope to return to Guatemala with School the World next February with the intention of providing children the opportunity to learn in a positive and educational environment. To any who are interested in helping others receive an education and having the journey of a lifetime, I highly recommend consulting School the World.- Cole R. - July 26, 2018
I began traveling with School The World almost four years ago, when I was a sophomore in high school. I was interested in the service trip to Guatemala because a lot of my friends were going, and it sounded like a fun way to spend April vacation. Little did I know that that trip would be the first of many unforgettable experiences with School The World. Before I even returned home from Guatemala, I knew I would be traveling again with STW, and I have been ever since. STW is different from other large non-profit organizations, in that the staff cares so much about each student traveling, as well as each student in the communities they visit. STW's mission touched me on such a personal level, and now I am hoping to make a career out of the lessons and values this organization has taught me. I have not had one bad experience with STW, both in Central America and here in Boston. I always look forward to traveling and working with STW, because no matter how hard the work is, both physically and mentally, everyone is always so passionate and dedicated, making the experience so much fun and so rewarding. Some of my best friends are people I've met through School The World, and I can say without a doubt that my life would not be the same if I had not gone on that one trip sophomore year. I have never seen such a hard-working group of people as the three members which make up the STW staff in Boston -- I admire their commitment and dedication so much. I will always be thankful for everything I've gained from this organization, and I am so proud of all of the amazing accomplishments they've made and the incredible growth they've achieved. What would you improve about this program? More students can travel with STW! There is always room for more people to sign up on trips, and the experience is so amazing that I think everyone should give it a chance. The more people who join, the more help we can give to education in Guatemala!- Megan - July 11, 2018
School the World has created an incredibly wonderful student-service program that has shaped the woman I am today! I just recently finished my sixth trip with STW and have seen the program expand dramatically in recent years. Not only are the experiences themselves uplifting, inspiring, and revolutionary for many students like myself, but the role School the World as an organization continues to play in our lives post-travel is exceptional. As an organization, STW truly cares about their student world changers, what is going on in their lives, and how they as an organization can make their students the happiest and most successful in their endeavors. Because of my experiences with STW throughout high school, I have chosen to study Public Health and Spanish in college in hopes of working for a non-profit like STW in my future. My trips have encouraged me to give to and empower others whenever I have the ability to, and have instilled in me a strong sense of empathy and compassion for human life, potential, and improvement. The STW staff have encouraged me to embrace opportunity with excitement and to remain a curious, active, and determined leader and advocate within my community. STW is an extremely hard working, and close-knit organization that I highly encourage everyone to get to know and be a part of! One of the most powerful aspects of STW's work is the deep connection the organization has with each community it works with, allowing students who travel with STW to form unforgettable relationships with students and community members in Guatemala. While working in the community everyday, some of the most noteworthy activities are shadowing families in the community, teaching the students in their classrooms, and playing with the students at recess! Another wonderful part of STW's trips is that us students are able to see the progression of the school or playground as we work hands-on to finish it by the end of our week in Guatemala. Working to build the school ourselves and knowing that we as a group were able to fundraise the money for the school makes the overall experience even more exciting!- Olivia - July 6, 2018