School the World

Program Reviews

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Grace
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Best summer trip!

From being immersed in a new culture to overcoming language barriers, my trip to Honduras was an amazing experience. The trip opened my eyes to both the struggles in the community of Quebrada but also to their joy and kindness. While the work was hard, our effort was worth it when we saw the children enjoying their new playgrounds. Being able to interact with the community made the project more personal, and overall, a better experience. This trip showed me how big both the educational and economic gap are and inspired me to continue to work to change it. I will never forget this trip or it’s impact!

Pros
  • Immersion into a new culture
  • Learning a new language
  • Meeting people from all over
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Abby
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

My favorite Spring Break yet

Over my High Schools April spring break, I traveled to Panama with School The World. This organization is set up by an incredible group of staff members and volunteers. While also on my trip, I met some of my best friends who I got to share this experience with. Before going on this trip, I did not really know what to expect other than the information we had been given beforehand. I was not sure if I was going to enjoy myself while on this trip, but after I had been on it, I realized it was my favorite trip yet. During this experience, learning first hand how so many people live in rural parts of Panama was so eye-opening. This program showed me as a high school student how much privilege I live with in my daily life. I have nothing but respect and praise to give to Danielle, Natalie, Ali, and Anna who run this program. I was nervous about going on this trip without being fluent in Spanish, but once I got there I realized how much Spanish you can use when you are around people who do not speak any, or very little English. I was a great time to use all my skills I have been learning and I feel much more confident in my Spanish now. I HIGHLY recommend this trip for absolutely anyone interested in service trips in Latin America.

Pros
  • Practicing my Spanish
  • Working with peers to better a community
  • Learn about a new culture
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Daniel
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Panama Spring 2022

Over spring break, I went to Panama with School The World and met an amazing staff and group of fellow travellers. I was unsure going into this program if I would enjoy it or not, but after completing the trip and learning so much about how other countries live I cannot say anything but praise this program. It is truly eye-opening to see how much we Americans don't have to deal with but can help with if we give a little effort and be a little more generous. The highlights were definitely getting to practice my Spanish with the locals and admire the scenery, but even despite the language barrier my group and I were able to communicate with the kids through waves and smiles alone. 100% reccommend for anyone wanting an experience that will change their life for the better forever.

Pros
  • Meeting new people
  • Practicing Spanish with locals
  • gaining an understanding of how impoverished live
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Elana
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

School the World: Guatemala 2019

My trip to Guatemala was such an eye-opening experience to be able to see how communities lived with so little yet their gratitude towards life was extraordinary. It is incredible to be able to give the gift of learning to another community because of its compounding effects over the long term. I was able to speak a little bit with the kids and adults using the Spanish that I had learned in school. Even though I couldn't speak Quiche, the local language, I was still able to have fun with the kids and communicate through other means. I highly recommend this trip to be able to see how others live their lives in other parts of the world and how vastly different the culture and standard of living is from our own lives in America.

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Lexi
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

My Experience With School the World

February 2020 was my second year traveling with School the World. The previous year I traveled to Guatemala and the last trip I traveled to Panama. I can easily say that both trips have made a significant impact on my life today. The week spent in February of my sophomore year building an elementary school consisted of long hours lifting heavy bricks and mixing cement by hand in the hot, shadeless building site with about twenty-five classmates. Additionally, we all participated in recess with the children at lunch. After taking part on this service trip, I discovered my passion for helping others in need and immediately jumped at the chance to go on a second trip my junior year and even recruited other classmates to join. The children in both Guatemala and Panama inspired me to always focus on the positive aspects of life instead of dwelling on the negative. They were nothing but appreciative, happy, and caring to all those who came to help build the school. The communities in Guatemala and Panama have a special place in my heart and the bonds that I have created on these School the World trips with the children and communities are unforgettable and irreplaceable. The rainforest of Panama on my second trip was drastically different from the underdeveloped dirt roads of Guatemala, but the impact we made on the community was equally rewarding.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
The most nerve-racking moment was trying to finish building the school on time. We only had one week to complete the task and it was stressful but rewarding. We all worked together to ensure the school was finished on time. The children even helped us with painting and moving cement. We always found a way on both trips to finish by the end of the trip no matter how much work it took.
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Catherine
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

STW February Panama Trip 2020

I absolutely loved my experience on the 2020 trip to Ngäbe-Buglé Comarca in Panama. Upon arrival, we got to see the best aspects of the countryside and relax at a beautiful resort by hanging out by the pool after our long day of travel which gave me an additional perspective on this very unique and dynamic country. We spent the next week working and playing in the village of Nueva Estrella which was the most welcoming, humble, and satisfied community I have ever seen. From my time with them, I gained an amazing sense of gratitude for little things in life and the realization that you don't need possessions to be happy, just good people. Providing these children with more access to education has been an experience I will never forget and I hope others get to have an opportunity to go on a trip with similar impact for everyone involved.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
I loved watching all of the chickens roaming around and the community being so patient and friendly with us.
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Emma
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

An amazing experience!

Panama was my second service trip with School the World, and it was incredible all around. Working with everyone on the trip, being involved in the community, and doing meaningful work were cores to the experience, and while the work we did was not easy (digging holes, creating concrete, building play structures, etc.) it was also incredibly rewarding. School the World does a great job assisting fundraising, educating about the country you are going to, and supporting you along the way. 10/10 recommend this experience!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Live in the moment and really soak in everything.
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Cole
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

STW 2018 February Review

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.

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Megan
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

School The World Student Service Learning

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!
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Olivia
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

STW is a must for travel eager students!

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!