4 Days Until Service-Learning Trip to Peru!

Photo of group of students in a classroom

Hi everyone!

There are only 4 days to go before the arrival in Cusco, Peru! Our very own GCU nursing students will be working to provide accessible health services, as well as our social work students participating in child care services. For 10 days we will experience the invaluable experience of volunteering abroad! Make sure to check our blog for updates on our trip from January 12th-20th using this link: https://georgian.edu/global-education-blog/peru-2019/

Hasta pronto!


Reflections from Nicaragua

Going into this experience I did not know what to expect. I was feeling so many different emotions. I was scared, excited, anxious, and so much more. When we first arrived, it was late at night after a long day and I was tired. I couldn’t really see what was going on and it looked scary to me. When we got to the rooms I was also feeling very skeptical about everything. It was not what I thought it was going to be. I definitely had a down moment that night and was praying the next day things would get better. It did (: After all the orientations, I had a better understanding on what was going on and that weekend we got to explore the country and have some fun. The lagoon was the best day and my favorite day there. It really was paradise. After having so much fun that weekend, it was time to get to work. I was excited at this point to help in the community and help people in the clinic. We got to go to the pharmacy and many of the medications the people needed were unavailable which was sad. We also got to go to triage, which was a lot of fun. We got through so many patients and I really felt like I was helping out and was able to use my skills to help the nurses and to help the patients get a better experience. We also went to homecare, which was such an eye-opening experience. All of the people let us into their houses and were so welcoming. The houses were so small and in some homes, there were many people in the house. I can’t even explain what the houses looked like, it made me speechless that these people lived on so little. They were so kind and so appreciative of us, it made me feel so good that I was able to do something for them. We also had many days of working hard in construction to build the clinic. We got a lot further than we thought we would, helping the clinic be built faster for them. The only thing that bothered me was how skinny all of the animals were, I wish I could have taken them all home and give them the love they deserve. Speaking of food, I am so happy that I am no longer eating rice (and I don’t like beans so that didn’t help much). It is just a different culture and their priority was to feed themselves and their children instead of the animals. At the dorms, we did not have any TV and there was the bare minimum everywhere, so all of us got very close.  Every night we would sit outside, talk, color and listen to music. I made closer relationships with people and new relationships with those I never knew before. It was so nice going on this trip with such a wonderful group of people that I got to share this experience with. It is hard because there are so many details about the trip that is almost impossible to put it all in words, but it’s great that I have the others that I can talk about the trip with and have those memories together that only we understand. I would do this again in a heartbeat. It was such an amazing trip that people need to experience to understand.

~ Sarah Vallee ’18

Hola todos

Today is our last day here in Nicaragua. For those wondering, we will be landing in El Salvador at 6:30pm, then again at JFK airport at 1:20am. The time will then change at 2 am so we are assuming we will be back at GCU by 4 am. We are excited to see you all!

-Leaving today is a bittersweet feeling. We have made new friends, and have really enjoyed touring the country as well as working in the health clinic. Each day we worked construction (and were taught how to rebarb and prep an empty dirt filled building to create a floor) and then for the second half of the day went on home care visits, worked in the lab, shadowed Drs. and triaged patients. We also worked with interns from all over the world and heard their stories and experiencesfrom their time here.

-We had many eye opening experiences on this trip that has forever made us extremely grateful for living in the United States, and showed us what we truly take for granted each day. We are excited to tell you more details when we arrive home.

Adios amigos 🙂

“How consoling it is in the evening to find oneself tired and worn out because the whole day was spent doing God’s work.”
-St. John Bosco

Day 8

Happy 24th birthday to our girl Andrea ! We love you and are so grateful for you! Thank you for being the best tour guide/translator/ long term volunteer leading our crew/ personal singer! Xo


La Clinica’s lab technician and her lab

6 Mile hike…



Headed back down on foot !

Our new friend Tom, a volunteer from Ireland took on the adventure with the nursing crew!

Some of our views

Adios amigo !!

Made it to El Porvenir

Made it to the top 🙂

Last step of the coffee process
These women must separate the defective coffee beans and fill 1 large red bag for the days work. The boss walks by and grabs a handful of the “good” bag and if more then 3 beans are defected the woman must start over again. Men are not allowed to do this job because they are not thorough/patient enough.

Ready to be shipped out. Each bag is 150lbs
Papa y nieto led the way
Touring the Coffee farm
Picking cocoa off the tree
Cracked open so we all can try- FYI it does not taste like chocolate
Coffee beans fresh off the tree

Made a new friend – Christopher

The dorm for single men/women coffee farm workers. Up to 4 men sleep in one cubby- all doors and windows must be sealed for protection from bugs and animals.
Mothers/fathers with children will sleep in the bigger dorm

The kitchen at the top of the mountain where they made a wonderful lunch for us 

We love the animals, there were so many wild chickens, pigs and cows

On a sad note, the dogs here are not held to the same value as they are in the US, dogs here are filed with fleas and rabies and are considered dirty and protection for the family. There is an abundance of stray dogs and it has been breaking our hearts. Below is a picture of a pup we met while eating lunch, we were told not to feed him (but we snuck some snacks to him)

Disclaimer-You can see the ribs on just about every animal here.. the food supply is low and needed for the families before the animals can get fed. The wet season brings more grass for them to feed. (it is currently the dry season)


Beginning of day 7

Selfies in front of active volcanos

Papa and niño bringing water back home via horseback

On our way up!

How we got to the top!! In a trailer on the back of a tractor 

Tour of Clinica Docente, Ciudad Sandino

Make it work- Be creative- #1 rule of nursing
OR suite
Nicaragua- Professor of nursing – She has 5 students Monday-Friday and 45 on Saturday and Sunday so they can work full time during the week
Dr. Marlene Bordas – Head of clinic – There are mission trips 4xs a year to this clinic in which free health care is provided to over 160 patients per day for a week
Radiology- No pregnant women allowed
First code cart seen since our arrival
The clinics only IV cart
What do y’all think this is?
Triage room for incoming patients to determine their level of care
The clinics Pharmacy
Incubator for the new babies
Settling the height feud – Kaci is 5’3 AND A HALF Allison is 5’2 AND A HALF and Jessica is ONLY 5’2
Ultrasound machines

ECG room