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Review for ASAP (Americans Serving Abroad Projects) , Marcellus, NY, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

My "story": "In a gentle way you can shake the world" Ghandi once said. I believe this statement to be true. My passion for mission trips began when I first went to Haiti in 2014. My sister was in her junior year of nursing and she was selected by her professor to go on this trip. Through school she was not able to go because of her chronic illness but outside of school she was able to attend. When she told me about this opportunity I asked if I could also join her because I am interested in doing traveling nursing especially internationally. So my sister and I went along with her professor who was leading it as well as other volunteers. We ran a medical clinic for a week right where we were staying at the Apparent Project Guest house. Some people were medical volunteers and others were non medical. I guess I started falling in love with Haiti as well as its people. I also fell in love with their culture and couldn't believe how much hope the people seemed to have yet they are living in bad conditions. I couldn't believe every morning I would wake up and hear people singing. I was speechless yet intrigued how little they have but yet seem to be a lot happier than most people I know. They have nothing, they work so hard for everything and their government doesn't help them. Ever since then I have had a passion for mission trips. Haiti and even now Africa will have a piece of my heart. 

My journey towards mission trips: "What has been seen cannot be unseen" this quote by C.A. Woolf is basically my drive for wanting to continue to do mission trips. Yes I love helping people but I don't think I will ever be the same after I had done my first mission trip. This is not a bad thing however I feel that if I am able to help others who are less fortunate and do not have basic necessities such as healthcare than I want to serve. I think as humans we are entitled to basic rights especially healthcare at least the most basic kind. I think as human beings we have a duty to help others especially those who do not have the most basic necessities of life. I don't mean to keep using quotes but they help me project what I want to say. Mother Theresa once said that "We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved, and uncared for is the greatest poverty. We must start in our own homes to remedy  this kind of poverty". I would like to make a humanistic difference in the world and hope that places in poverty could receive basic accessibility to healthcare. 

My journey in Africa: I participated mainly in the community/educational portion of the mission trip. For two weeks Lauri 2 and I went to four different villages twice to help spread the word about scrabble. In the first village for the first day it was ran differently as opposed to the other days. Danielle and I taught around the world and Scrabble in 2 classes. In the other 2  classrooms Lauri 2 was discussing the book "The Agony of an African Woman". I think the around the world was a good concept but it took up time needed for teaching the students and teachers how to play Scrabble. For the other villages we taught the students Scrabble and then started only teaching the teachers Scrabble so then the teachers can teach the students how to play. I think it was genius whoever came up with the idea of incorporating Scrabble into teaching English to 7th-8th graders for this trip yet fun. I know the students enjoyed playing Scrabble as well as the teachers. Both the teachers and students even became competitive. I thoroughly enjoyed teaching as well as watching the students think of English words. I think because both the teachers and students were interested in the game it became successful. Everyday after the schools Lauri 2 and I would meet up with the medical clinic to help the rest of the group. I would help whereas needed ranging from doing vital signs, registration for a little bit, running water to the medical team or doing wound care. I enjoyed helping the medical team. I thought it was impressive how the medical team was ran especially being that a lot of the volunteers have had no experience doing a medical mission trip before but everybody did so well. I enjoyed watching each person on the medical team working. Even though it was so hot and humid out everybody gave it there all and that was admirable. I wish though maybe after the clinic when everyone unwound a little after dinner we could have talked about each of our days. I think being on the education aspect of it and not really having patient contact I would have liked to have known if anything stood out to anyone and just their overall experience each day. I enjoyed both the safari/pool day as well as seeing the slave castle and having dinner with everyone and going to the market. I think it's nice to do mission trips for 2 weeks. Especially I would think for the medical team if people are coming back and you want to see if anything changed with them. I also liked going back to each of the schools and seeing the progress the teachers made in teaching Scrabble. I really liked going to village 4 I just thought it was very beautiful and the fact that the teachers found us to play Scrabble was really moving. I really enjoyed this trip and thought Gyamfi did a good job with coordinating everything. His passion for both the education and medical aspect of the mission trip is infectious. I think the world needs more people such as Gyamfi who are willing to do things most people wouldn't do. I think it is very important that we teach English especially to people at a younger age so that one day they could have a career and better themselves. I think Lauri 1 did a wonderful running the mission trip as well. She is compassionate and inspiring with all the work she had put into this trip. I would definitely recommend anyone to go on this trip. I am glad I joined Facebook after my last mission trip in January otherwise I would have not known about ASAP/Sem Frontieras. Thank you for this opportunity I will always cherish and take away so much from this trip. I want to dedicate a quote to everyone: If you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday" (Isa. 58:10).In conclusion I apply this quote to my life as a missionary "A path forward is found, not through providing resources to the poor, but by walking with them in humble relationships" (Corbett, Fikkert). 

Would you volunteer for this group again?


For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?


When was your last experience with this nonprofit?


Role:  Volunteer