Hi Glimpsers!

We are less than a week away from our SFO meeting day/time and so close to an amazing experience in Panama! I hope you are as excited as Brittney 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 yet. Please be available this afternoon 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 Monday, June 10th morning. 

One important change has taken place since our introductory email and phone call. Our departure time has changed to 7:20am – this means we will need to be at the airport now no later than 4:20am. Here are flight details:

After each of our Global Glimpse experiences in the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, and Ecuador (respectively), we have some tips for you that might help your packing lists. Please see this week’s weather report for Las Tablas to get a better idea of the daily temperature and precipitation. Here is the report:

Additionally, our program coordinators, Nathan and Arleen, have highlighted some Panama-specific recommendations for all of us. Here are the tips:

1. Sometimes, it rains heavily and unexpectedly. So, bring a poncho and/or umbrella.

2. Bring plenty of bug spray! (Make sure it has DEET).

3. Bring allergy medicines. Lots of rain means lush flora and fauna!

4. Bring light clothing because it’s very humid here.

5. Bring your curiosity, flexibility and an open mind (perhaps filled with some background knowledge on Panama)

Outside of clothes, another recommendation I have is English-tutoring materials “such as dry-erase or regular markers, Spanish/English flash cards, blank index cards, stickers, pens/pencils, and any 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. Every GG student will receive a travel journal but an extra notebook for notes, journals, letters, etc. would be beneficial. 

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 trips, 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 that are still going through finals, we still have some time to consider what we need to bring, so don’t stress! This is going to be an incredible experience, and we are very happy to be your leaders. We 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! And please feel free to reach out to your leaders with any questions or concerns. Can’t wait to meet y’all in person!

Big Love,

Brendan and Brittney