Hi Glimpsers!

We are nearly a week away from our SFO meeting time and so close to an amazing experience in Ecuador! I hope you are as excited as Brittney, Carlos, and I and are feeling prepared for the trip! As of today, we have called and contacted most of you (check your email as well!), and we will be reaching out later today for those students that we haven’t been able to talk to in-person. Please be available this afternoon (if you are not still in class), and make sure you write down any questions you may have. It will be a good opportunity to make sure everything is on pace for next Wednesday (at 6am).

After my experience last year in Nicaragua and some research on Guaranda, I have some tips for you that might help your packing list. First, I think the most important items we can bring are layers! The weather looks like the highs are in the mid-60s and the lows are in the mid-40s (with possible light rain on most days). I have attached a weather report for the next week to give you an idea. I would recommend wearing clothes that keep you warm during the day and warmer at night. Additionally, make sure you have a waterproof jacket and some shoes that can get wet and dirty.

Outside of clothes, another recommendation I have is English-tutoring materials “such as dry-erase or regular markers, flash cards, blank note cards, stickers, and simple games can be especially useful for supplementing lessons with students with lower literacy levels.” This is a daily activity on our trip so having as many tools and aids as possible will make the lessons more manageable and successful. I would make sure that each GG student has a notebook and pen available for notes, journaling, and letters. There will be many opportunities to document the experience and also to jot down ideas for the next one.

In addition to supplying the things that will make your day-to-day involvement better, start thinking about any items that might make the experience more positive and happy for the locals that we meet. Small gifts (stickers, books, postcards, school supplies, etc.) were a highlight of my trip last year, so please take a moment to consider some things from the Bay Area that might be cool to bring. Check the portal for more info!

Finally, I hope you all enjoy the next week before our trip! For those that are done with school (very jealous) and those still going through finals, we have plenty of time to consider what we need to bring, so don’t stress! This is going to be an awesome experience, and I am so happy to be one of your leaders. I hope to make the trek as much fun as possible and also to help everyone process the once-in-a-lifetime conversations, activities, and friendships that we will encounter. When you feel like you have a free minute (or hour), please enter your first introductory blog post on here so we can start getting to know each other! Feel free to reach out to your leaders with any questions or concerns. Can’t wait to meet y’all in person!

Big Love,