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August 1 to 9, 2019

With more than two million people bustling around Guayaquil, the city opens its arms to newcomers with a hearty welcome. Whether you’re along the riverfront or in the city center, there’s something exciting for you to discover. The largest ferris wheel in South America? Trees draped with iguanas? A striped lighthouse on a hill? Find all of this and more. You’ll be working in a school that is supported through sponsorships for students and families with limited resources in the community of Bastión Popular, which was originally settled by squatters on the outskirts of the city.

Included in cost —

Grants are available to current and retired school staff and university faculty who are paying full cost out of pocket.

Thursday, August 1 — Arrival in Guayaquil

You will fly into Guayaquil, Ecuador, and catch a taxi at the airport to get to your lodgings. Maybe you will have time to check out some of the museums downtown. Spend the evening getting to know your teammates over dinner.

Friday, August 2 — Guayaquil

Spend the day immersing yourself in the fascinating history and culture of the neighborhood known as Bastión Popular. You’ll take a trip to the rural countryside where many residents of Bastión migrated from. After a drive to the coast, you’ll spend the night at a local hotel so that you’re ready for tomorrow’s adventure!

Saturday, August 3 — Machalilla National Park

This day will be spent on the scenic Ecuadorian Pacific Coast. Machalilla National Park has over 200 square miles of gorgeous beaches, wetlands and tropical forest. You’ll see many species of wildlife set against the backdrop of awe-inspiring cliffs. Since it’s migrating season for humpback whales, you might get lucky and spot one!

Sunday, August 4 — Return to Guayaquil

In the morning you’ll take a leisurely drive back to Guayaquil. Once there, your time will be spent exploring more of the city and preparing for the days ahead at the school.

Monday, August 5 — Guayaquil

Today is the day to go to school! You will meet the teachers at Hope of Bastión (Esperanza de Bastión), a Christian school, in the morning before students arrive. You’ll then spend the school day observing and gaining context for the students and class of your partner teacher. In the afternoon, you will attend the planning session for the Girls STEM Club. After lunch, you’ll take a walk through Bastión to get to know the students’ community.

Tuesday, August 6 — Guayaquil

This morning will be more collaboration with your partner teacher. You might plan together or co-teach. You’ll spend the afternoon on a tour of downtown Guayaquil, getting to know the famous Malecón promenade and the barrio Las Penas. The urban iguanas in the park will be delighted to pose for pictures!

Wednesday, August 7 — Guayaquil

The school day will allow plenty of time to continue collaborating with your partner. During the afternoon, you’ll participate in the Girls STEM Club at the school. Afterwards, you’ll get to know more of fascinating Guayquil. At the waterfront Malecón Salado, you can snap more pictures of the city while sampling many delicious local foods and treats.

Thursday, August 8 — Guayaquil

The final morning of collaboration in the school will wrap up any loose ends. Once you’ve said goodbye to your partner, you’ll stop by the artisan market for any last minute souvenirs you want to take home. A farewell dinner with the team will bring closure to your time together.

Friday, August 9 — Return to the US

Ecuador celebrates Independence Day today, so school will be on holiday. If you have a late flight, you will spend time in the city exploring the festivities and maybe check out Isla Santay, where there are rescued crocodiles and a small fishing community just 800 meters across a pedestrian bridge from the city center.

In order to create the best possible experience for you, we might need to alter this itinerary. We will let you know about any significant changes.

For this trip, we are partnering with the Hope of Bastion School, founded in Guayaquil in 1997. Located in the Bastión Popular area, it serves the children of this established squatter community of approximately 300,000 residents. One hundred eighty children are enrolled in kindergarten through 8th grade.

The language spoken at school and at home is Spanish.

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