I was scared to see what Guatemala would look like, but I was also excited to see how I could help the kids. My parents had shown me videos of Hug It Forward so I knew a bit about what to expect. It was an interesting experience to be able to build schools for the kids in Guatemala. It was also fun to play football with the kids, even though we don’t speak the same language. We still understood what we wanted to do.
It’s changed me because I now think a lot more about kids who don’t have a school to go to and learn things. Some of us don’t like to go to school and would prefer to spend the day doing what we want instead of going to school. But these kids want to go to school and want to be educated.
My class put together a performance to show to the rest of the school how I worked with the kids and elders in the village to build these schools. We used plastic bottles that we brought in from home and we mimed the rest. We spent around three to four weeks to prepare the performance.
Currently, I’m raising funds to build a bottle school. On my birthday in November, I asked my friends to give me a donation for that school. My friend Ivan gave me a present and an envelope with money for the bottle school — that was the best!
We have a really good life. And when we see others who have way less but they are happy — then we appreciate more what we’ve got and focus on other things — such as spending time with family and friends, without any electronics involved. Just outside having fun.