Monday, February 25, 2013

Less Than A Week!

We had our last pre-trip meeting tonight! We separated supplies among the group to be backed and touched on some last minute details. The group is so excited to start our adventure to have tons of fun while practicing our skills and learning new ones, all the while learning about a new culture and meeting new people. We will be blogging throughout the trip so stay tuned on the details of our journey to Belize!

Our boxes of supplies!

Friday, February 22, 2013

A Guest From Belize!

I've gotten a little neglectful of blogging this week... The time just got away from me! We were so lucky to have Andrea West, a Grad Student at UMaine who is from Belize City, come to talk to our group about her country. She shared a wealth of information about the country's background as well as some helpful pointers about cultural practices. She also gave us a heads up about the type of humor Beliezians (?) use and she wanted us to remember that the locals are not so "politically correct" as we are here in the states.

With 9 days to go until our plane leaves the runway, we've got a lot of packing to do! We were so grateful to be able to get almost $2000 from our Student Government to help us out with supplies and trip expenses. With their help, and with that of very generous donations we are able to take a wealth of supplies with us to Belize to help us serve the community. 

We have just one more group meeting separating us and the trip. I know we are all very excited to get there and to share our experiences with everyone!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Putting Our Team Work Skills to the Test!

Cancelled Meeting Tonight

Unfortunately, due to lovely Mother Nature our meeting tonight was cancelled. We had planned to have a special guest tonight; a fellow UMaine Student who is from Belize, however we are hoping we can re-schedule.

Despite being unable to meet tonight, most of us were able to get together at the Rec Center on campus for some fun team building activities. We learned more about one another and different skills we each have and we had the opportunity to laugh and have some fun before the trip.

The snow may keep us from meeting tonight, though it reminds me more of how excited I am to get on the plane and enjoy a sunny adventure in Belize!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Less Than A Month To Go!

We are less than a month away from our adventure to Belize. We have raised a little over $1,500 thus far and we have decided to put a chunk of that money toward supplies.  Our goal is to bring personal hygiene items like toothbrushes, tooth paste, soap and shampoo to give to the villagers, as well as vitamins, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, etc. Luckily, we can get some of these items very inexpensively from an organization called Partners in World Health. A company named Americares was kind enough to donate about 400 toothbrushes, fungal cream, and aspirin. We will also bring medical supplies like tape, gauze, band aids. Our hope is to use our fund raised money to bring the children crayons, stickers and coloring paper as well.

We also discussed with Aaron, who is going on this trip for the second time, about what to pack. His suggestion is to bring as little as possible and to bring very casual comfortable clothes. Personally, I have always had an issue with over packing.... So I will certainly have to triple-check my luggage for unnecessary items! (I have been advised to bring my hair dryer and make-up items home!)

Coming up this weekend on Sunday we have planned a team building activity so we can bond a little bit more as a group before we take flight in March. We have a lot to look forward to over the next couple of weeks!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Immunization Night

The Travel Clinic was "kind" enough to visit our group Monday evening to consult with us about the recommended vaccinations for us to get before we go to Belize.  Luckily, there were only two vaccines we each needed to get: Typhoid Fever and Hepatitis A. We were also advised about taking Anti-Malaria medications. 

Personally, I get a little anxious about getting any shot. So of course Monday night made me a little jittery as I waited to receive mine. To my surprise, the shots were very bearable. I felt much more pain with the flu shot. I will credit this to the nice lady from the travel clinic who administered them to us.

With the immunizations out of the way we are that much closer to being ready to board our flight for the trip. With 31 days left until we leave, we plan to collect supplies and hopefully have one more bottle drive to help pay for things like vitamins and crayons to give to the young kids.