GLA has been a great experience for my daughter. She learned a lot about the Dominican Republic culture and the challenges the community faces there while having an opportunity to make a lot of new friends and enjoy the beautiful island. It was amazing to see how much she matured in a short time and how much her view of the world has broadened since that trip. We are already planning her next trip to Belize.
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Global Leadership Adventures (GLA)
My experience with Global Leadership Adventures was life changing. Traveling to a different country alone can be quite scary but the phenomenal mentors helped made me feel so much more at home. The mentors were serious and strict when they had to be, but were also fun to hang out with and talk to. It was also so fun meeting other teens on the program. We did so many things while in the Dominican Republic. Some of which include build a house for a family, played and talked with the locals, swam in the ocean, and learned about the world and environment. (And this is just naming a few.) I highly recommend GLA trips for high schoolers, especially if they are looking to travel or try something new.
My 15 year old daughter attended the Dominican Republic Public Health Initiative Summer 2016 (2 week program). I highly recommend this program to ambitious and curious students who are interested in public health and social science. My 15 year old was fortunate enough to take a Human Geography class her Freshman year in high school and the trip was essentially an extension of the Human Geo class. Each day was filled with a lot of work in the communities, getting to know the Dominican and Haitian people and evening workshops led by group mentors. It was not an easy trip but probably one of the most fulfilling experiences my daughter has ever had. The work she did has inspired her to think about a career in Medicine/Public Health. As a parent I never worried whether she was safe. The program is so well run I had complete confidence in the staff and support staff in the Dominican Republic. We would definitely do another trip.
The trip with Global Leadership Adventures is so worth it. When I went, we usually woke up, ate breakfast, and then went to our activity of the day (usually walking which made it more fun). We got to do service activities like building a house out of recycled plastic water bottles (!!!) or visiting a Haitian batey which was so eye opening. Even though some activities may be emotionally or physically harder than others, the people around you is what it makes it all worth while. Everyone in my group got along and we still talk. Then there's the recreational activities like zipping which is beautiful. And even though the price of the trip may be a little much, there's tons of different ways to fundraise and the trip will definitely be worth the cost. For activities we usually wore athletic shorts and a t-shirt or tank, but in the communities we wore long pants (about 3 days where you need to wear long pants). Oh and do not forgot mentors. Your mentors are the greatest people and they will teach you so much on this trip, GLA mentors are undoubtably amazing. Let me know if you have any questions and I hope you choose to go on this trip!
Going to the Dominican Republic with Global Leadership Adventures was such an amazing experience. The staff was super helpful. The food is amazing but I would also bring snacks from home like granola bars. Also there is no wifi but the staff will help you keep in touch with your parents. Also make sure to bring a battery powered fan because it does get super hot. The DR home base does have outlets so you can charge your phone.
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