With the undeniable success of Envisage International’s inaugural partnership with nonprofit, School the World, in 2018 EIC has sent a second group of employees to Guatemala. This year’s team of five – all based in the Neptune Beach office – have been tasked with helping to build a primary school and accompanying playground in a poverty-stricken Guatemalan community.
The team of volunteers landed early Sunday morning at the Guatemala City airport where they met fellow volunteers from International Medical Group (IMG) prior to boarding buses for the beautiful city of Antigua. One peanut butter and jelly sandwich and an hour later the team checked into a local hotel and had the opportunity to experience the magic of the city of Antigua.
The cobblestone streets made of varying size of worn stone offer only a small glimpse of the city’s charm. After a short walk, the team found themselves in the town center – a busy plaza met on two corners with a large yellow church. Tables sat on the edge of each sidewalk of the main square, full with still-sizzling street food, tourists, locals and vendors selling handmade jewelry and baroque tapestries of all shapes and sizes.
As the EIC team ventured deeper into the city they were met with local adults and children alike selling various items in the busy streets, from battery operated balloons to slices of fruit and local nuts. Choosing to walk on the safer side, the team took refuge from the heat in a local coffee shop and enjoyed tortilla soup, or “sopa” as the locals would say.
The night came to a close as the team shared a meal with members of School the World, and volunteers from Flywire, IMG and Ivywise at a local restaurant. While the meals themselves were delicious (a choice of chicken, vegetarian dish, or steak), the universal favorite was the accompanying beverage, a freshly made and chilled limonada complete with lime slices.
Tomorrow the team will travel to the community and begin physically building the school. The team will share more updates and photos soon!