Director of Service-Learning
Office of Service-Learning
4200 54th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33711
Honduras: Spring Break '10
A group of 11 students, led by staff member Justin Walker '09, traveled to La Ceiba, Honduras to explore service opportunities and challenge their notions of joy and comfort. The group was determined to spend their time assisting CRILA, one of the only rehabilitation clinics in Honduras. However, when they arrived, the group realized such ambitions would be limited by the cultural realities. The group had to adjust their service goals and plans based on the availability of the resources needed for work. After a long hike on the first day, the group assessed the condition of the future site of CRILA and met with one of the founders to discuss how the service progress through the week.
The group, which began with 11 students and an Eckerd College staff member, grew to include several Honduran locals who would travel together throughout the week. The service group spent the first few days "bush-hogging," clearing brush and overgrown weeds. Certain members of the group displayed their skills wielding machetes, while others received assistance from some local children who were curious about our presence. The last few days of the trip were spent painting the front wall of the future building. The group was able to detail the walls with CRILA's motto and logo. The driving force behind the work was the group's cheerful attitude, despite the exhausting heat and manual labor. Additionally, the group wanted to draw attention to CRILA for its services it will provide at the new site and for the continued support required to further development. CRILA needs much more financial support to successfully open the future site. The Eckerd spring break trip was determined to clean up the site and augment the aesthetic qualities to promote CRILA and assist the progress of its services.
The local Hondurans amazed the Eckerd group through their generosity and hospitality. However, the Eckerd students made some of the greatest impressions on some of the locals. Two Hondurans, momentarily shed any machisimo attitudes to admire the hardworking women in the group, while also dancing and singing along with the group to maintain high spirits. The service group also attracted the attention of the national press, which was a great success regarding wanting to showcase CRILA to the locals and foreigners alike.