"We are parents of a 16-year-old girl who insisted that her life would just cease to exist if she wasn’t allowed to go on this trip to Peru. Being your average, protective parent, we were thrilled at the prospect of her having such an incredible opportunity, yet scared that something beyond our control might happen. With a leap of faith, and an intensive grilling of Shawn Heflick, the teacher and biologist in charge of this trip, we agreed that she could go."
"So off to Peru she went! We heard from her numerous times via email. You could tell she was having an incredible time! She couldn’t find the words to express all that she was seeing and experiencing, but we could tell she was having a wonderful trip. We still have the emails, and if your child goes on this trip, print these out and save them in a scrapbook. They are so busy learning and experiencing so much, that these emails help them remember exactly what they were doing at that time."
"To say she experienced a trip of a lifetime is an understatement, more appropriately we think this trip changed her views on life."
"The night she came home she was so excited and wired. She just talked and talked and talked…when is the last time your 16-year old voluntarily did that with you? The next morning we had to immediately rush to the 1-hour photo place and get all ELEVEN rolls of film developed. By that time we were as excited about seeing them as she was! Sitting with her looking at the pictures, and seeing everything she experienced was amazing. She had a story for just about every photograph, and just laughed and laughed and had such joy about this trip. The pictures were amazing. She told us which river was the Amazon and how she could tell them apart, which tribal group was which, what type of bird was what, and I think her favorites…each little Peruvian childs name. She definitely fell in love with those kids."
"Although she came home with lots and lots of beautiful Peruvian souvenirs, it’s the intangibles she came home with that are the most treasured by us. Our kids are raised in such an insulated world that they can’t imagine not having every comfort and every “thing” they have. She saw kids who basically “have nothing” but are just so happy and carefree. One of the things she said that will always stay with us is this “Those kids have nothing, but are so happy! Kids here should see that.” It definitely gave her greater appreciation for all that she has."
"This trip also gave her a sense of adventure, a passion for travel, and confidence to pursue both. She found out that all her hard work was worth the effort, and we all need to experience that because sometimes that’s just not the case. She found out that not everyone in the world lives like we do, and that we need to respect people of different cultures, accept them for who and what they are, and that not everyone has to live the way we do. She saw tribes of people who live very primitively, she saw kids without Gameboys and toys, but who nonetheless are joyous and happy, she saw things that I can only hope will remain with her the rest of her life."
"So, we recommend you allow your child to experience this wonderful adventure. We can’t believe that any young person would take this trip and not be truly touched by the sights and sounds of another culture, another way of life. Hopefully it will teach your child as much as it has taught ours."
Bob and Ellen Parda
"This trip was an amazing experience I will never forget! It was awesome experiencing a whole different culture, and that has changed some of my perceptions on things. I know everyone has some memories from this trip that will last forever.. I love Peru!" Lindsey, Summer 2002 Trip
"This has been one outstanding and life altering trip...this will stay in my mind and my heart forever!" Kelly, Summer Trip 2002
"What can I say, it was a blast!" Eric, Summer Trip 2002
"I can't believe how much fun I had on this trip!" Teresa, Summer Trip 2002
"This trip has been sweet. I got my first plane trip, ridden in boats, walked in the rainforest, swam in a river and made many new friends." Robin, Summer Trip 2002
"I love seeing things for myself instead of reading about it. I enjoyed meeting new and sweet people." Brian, Summer Trip 2002
"It's been fun! Going to Peru was a great experience. I have a whole new outlook on the world!" Chelsea, Summer Trip 2002
"This trip has been AWESOME!" Tim, Summer Trip 2002