Post-trip volunteer blog: Claudine Hummel

Written by volunteer Claudine Hummel:

It has been a few weeks since coming home from Nicaragua and it is still difficult to put into words how incredible and overwhelming the experience was. Not to sound cliché, but I knew before going on the trip that this would be one of those life-changing experiences. I was excited and thrilled but also nervous because I would be taken out of my comfort zone (which is a good thing) and experience something new. Even though I had fundraised and supported this amazing project from the beginning, it was my first trip there. It seemed surreal that I’d finally get to see the school and students I was trying to help firsthand.

I always knew how vital education is, and therefore how important the school is. But I discovered that the school does so much more than educate. It helps give people hope, self-worth, and confidence. It also helps the students have a profound affect on everyone around them with an incredible ripple effect. A woman that owned a restaurant that we stopped at for lunch one day said the school was helping her business because more people were getting jobs and therefore had money to spend at her restaurant. One of the students at the school told us how she now had hopes of going to medical school where she could then bring that knowledge back with her and better her hometown.

Education is not just about learning to read and write. It is about utilizing the knowledge for personal growth, to allow people to lead and live their lives without depending on others, to combat poverty. Education has the power to change the world, if we let it.

The difference people can make if we believe in and help one another is breathtaking. There are so many people involved in this project, from the volunteers and builders to the financial or emotional supporters and every person in between. Together we have, and continue to come together to support and help this school grow. Even now, we will soon break ground on building a daycare for 54 mothers and their 88 children, to give them the care they deserve while they continue their life-changing education.

The main thing this trip has taught me is that no one can do everything, but everyone working together can do something and can change the world for the better. I can’t thank Random Acts enough for opening my eyes to this fact and for the beautiful people of Nicaragua for opening up my heart to it as well.

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