Review Volunteer Lauren Hopkins Honduras La Ceiba Dental program
1.-How was the local ABV Coordinator and the support provided in-country?
Excellent. The coordinator was very accommodating and made sure we felt safe and comfortable at all times.
2- What was the most surprising thing you experienced?
At the program: How little the patients were charged for dental services. Extractions and cleanings were about 2-5 US dollars. In the US these costs are much more.
At the accommodation: Lunch is the biggest meal here and dinner is much smaller. At home it is normally vice-versa for me so took some time to get used to.
About the country: How much poverty there is. It was very sad.
3- What was most difficult to experience?
At the program: I loved the clinic and the doctors we worked with were amazing! I have no complaints.
At the accommodation: The first night sleeping in the heat was hard. I kept waking up because I wasn't used to it.
The country: I don't speak much Spanish so communicating was very hard at times.
4- Any tips for future volunteers…
Clothing: light clothing and a cooling towel if you have one! Also a water bottle came in handy.
Donations: If you have any gauze, gowns, glove,masks, toothbrushes, and toothpaste!, bring from home or buy locally.
Weather: So hot!!!! Bring bug spray also!
4.1-Other things volunteers should know:
a.- Prepare to sweat! It was so hot so many days which was the hardest part. Coming from Michigan it was a huge shock.
b.- Be patient- people are a lot more relaxed here about time rather than always on the go like in the states. You just have to adapt and be patient because that's how it works here.
c. Go explore the beauty! There are so many beautiful hikes and rivers and beaches here! On your time off make sure you experience that too!
d.- Be open minded. Just because they may do somethings different here doesn't mean it's the wrong way or that we should try and correct things. Just do your best to help out where you are needed!
5- Personal Paragraph (ABV Program Testimonial), don’t leave blank:
Overall, I loved this trip and am so glad I had the opportunity to do it. It not only opened my eyes to many things but made me more grateful for things we have in the us and take for granted. I will definitely be doing another trip like this in the future!
6- How would you describe your accommodation, meals and security:
Great! I never once felt unsafe. It was so fun trying all the meals of the culture here in Honduras and the food was amazing!!
7- What was your favorite memory of this trip?
Program: the second day we were there we went up in the mountains and worked in an old building. The building was filled with so many patients waiting for cleanings and extractions! It was a very busy day but the most rewarding to be able to help so many people out.
Country: My favorite memory of the country was white water rafting down the river. It was one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen and so much fun! I recommend everyone who comes to la ceiba to do it!
8.- How was the ABV USA support prior traveling?
Communication (Phone/emails/Online chat):
Very good. Any questions or concerns I had were quickly answered. I felt very satisfied with the abv support.
Website Information: The website has a lot of good information but I felt more of my questions were answered by speaking with someone directly.
9 – Are you willing to speak to other potential ABV volunteers?
10 – Can you tell us how did you find or know about A Broader View?
I found about a broader view online. I did some research and was debating on several other organizations.