The summer of 2009 was very inspirational for me. I got the chance to go on my first mission trip to Belize City, Belize. It changed my life. I was told that we would be repairing residents’ homes on this trip, but we did much more than that.
Our trip began at 6 o’clock in the morning on Thursday July 9, 2009 when we left my hometown of Faith, NC to the airport. With our passports ready we boarded the plane in Charlotte, NC and flew to the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport in Texas. Then, we changed flights in Texas and took American Airlines into Belize. The mission trip was organized by Group Workcamps at www.groupworkcamps.com. Our mission team stayed at the Nazarene High School for the week. This is where we met three other groups from different states that came together for one cause, to help others.
The first night in Belize, we got our assignments of what kind of work we would be doing. Some people had roofing, painting, or building ramps. My resident needed the outside of her home painted, new windows, and some carpentry work done to her house. That night we all went to sleep on the floor under our mosquito nets. We pondered what our residents would be like while the geckos on the wall sang a song. We got up early the next morning, had breakfast and got on the school bus. The busses drop each of us off at our work site. I met with my resident who had seven children all under the age of sixteen. She was a teacher on summer break while her husband was working during the day. She made it clear to us that she was blessed to have us work on her home. We worked for a half a day, had lunch, then worked a little more until the busses picked us up and drove us back to the High School for the night. This was how our day went for Saturday and Monday through Wednesday.
Sunday was our free day and my team got to go to a waterpark called Old Belize at Cucumber Beach. www.oldbelize.com. It was awesome! I got to ride a 600 foot zip-line over the beach, a 90 foot water slide, play beach volleyball, go through a historical exhibit, and play in the water. It was so much fun.
We worked hard the rest of the week and got finished with our assignment on time. After all that hard work we were rewarded with another free day on Thursday July 16. We took the Caye Caulker Water Taxi to and island called Caye Caulker. There my mom and I went scuba diving with the Belize Diving Service to see the coral reef that surrounds the island. http://belizedivingservices.net/. It was amazing what we could see under water. Thousands of fish (big and little), lobsters, stingrays, ells, multi-colored corals, everything that could blow your mind we saw scuba diving.
Not only did we work hard and have fun we also learned about another culture. The people in Belize are happy with what they have. Even though they did not have a lot of money, belongings or nice houses, they shared what they had with us. By going on this mission trip I learned that happiness and wealth does not come from the possessions you own. I also learned that helping others brings joy to both parties.
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