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Ronald Porter
Acting Director of Service Learning

Eckerd College
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St. Petersburg, FL 33711

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Service Learning

Service Learning

Peru: Spring Break '10


Horacio Zeballos, Peru
Niño Luz School

View photos from Peru

Eight months of planning, four hours to Miami, six hours on a plane, and a forty-five minute journey from Jorge Chávez airport in Lima to the small rural community of Horacio Zeballos our team was finally together with the smiling, welcoming faces of the beautiful people of Niño Luz. Overwhelmed by the feeling of finally reaching our destination and the eagerness to begin our work, we were calmed by the soft words of the school coordinator named Teo.

The Inca spiritualist, Teo, along with the Niño Luz community described the vision of the school as they welcomed us in to their home, literally. Throughout the week, the crew of Eckerd students put their sweat and energy into working with the locals on two projects. We began by digging holes with pick axes, mixing cement, and erected a railing to guide children up and down the stairs of the school. Our second project was scrapping off old, crusty paint, sanding the walls, and applying a new layer of colorful paint to two classrooms and the kitchen. Both projects were successfully completed within the span of only a week.

During the hours of hard labor put into the trip, the relationships formed with the children, teachers, and people in the community were as rewarding as the physical finished products. Each day during work, we shared stories about our own culture while learning about the norms of Peru. Whether it was a game of soccer after completing work for the day, being a part of a spiritual Inca ritual, or dancing during the evening celebrations, our group of Eckerd students took every opportunity to experience life just like the locals of Horacio Zeballos do everyday.

On the last day in Peru, we journeyed to Punta Hermosa beach where we surfed and spent time relaxing on the gorgeous sand. The relationships we made with the people of Niño Luz are forever in our hearts. The work we completed and time we dedicated to the vision of the school is a progressive step in bettering the lives of the children in the rural community of Horacio Zeballos.

View photos from Peru

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