Frequently Asked Questions
In what town will we be staying and working?
San Antonio Ilotenago
What type of work are we doing?
We will be working with local families to build safe, ventilated stoves. Each stove project is different, but there are jobs for every age, ability and skill level. From mixing concrete to laying bricks to helping clean tools and move materials there are a lot of opportunities to try different roles during each project.
In what kinds of places will we be staying?
We’ll be staying in two hotels - one on the way to San Antonio Ilotenago (located in Antigua) and then one on the way back (located at Lake Atitlán). During the week, we’ll be at the mission house in San Antonio Ilotenago. All the guys will be staying in one room and the women will be in another. We’ll be sleeping on bunk beds!
There is bedding on the beds there, but feel free to bring a blanket if you like.
What will we be eating?
The food we’ll be served at the mission house (breakfast and dinner every day) will be traditional Guatemalan food. It will be all natural, not processed, etc. In short, it will be more healthy than we’re probably used to eating. While at the work sites we’ll be eating PB&J, and whatever snacks you’d like to bring along.
Everyone is encouraged to pack snacks for each day. Granola bars, trail mix, and goldfish have been recommended as good ideas of snacks to pack.
I have all kinds of ridiculous allergies. What do I do?
Be sure to mention your allergies and other medical concerns on your forms. The kind folks at the mission house will take those into account and do their best to accommodate your needs.
Do I need any shots?
There are no shots required for the trip, but make sure your tetanus shot is up to date. It is also recommended that you have your doctor write you a prescription for “Cipro", which is an antibiotic to help if you come across digestive issues while in country. Before the trip, consult with your doctor and the CDC website to see if any additional precautions make sense for you.
CDC Travel Recommendations
Can I bring my musical instrument?
Sure! Keep in mind anything you bring, you also need to be able to carry and take on a plane.
What can we bring in terms of donations for the people we meet?
You can begin to collect books, small toys, towels, soap, shampoo, etc. Faith Project International will take any donations! We will be working near a school and might have the opportunity to spend time with the kids, so books, crayons and coloring books would be especially great. Also bring things that you wouldn’t mind leaving (old t-shirts, pants) - we will accept donations at the end of the week to leave for the folks we’ve been working with.
What kind of clothing should I pack?
You’ll want to bring comfortable pants (scrubs come highly suggested) and t-shirts to work in. You can wear almost anything while we’re out in the town, BUT due to cultural sensitively both men and women must be covered from the knees down (no shorts or short skirts) and shoulders must be covered. Jeans are okay!
As for footwear, you’ll want close-toed shoes for the work sites but other than that you can bring anything to wear.
What else should I pack that I might not be thinking about?
You’ll want to bring two towels. It has been suggested that you bring old (gently used) towels or purchase inexpensive new ones to use while you’re there and then donate to the house when we leave.
An extra toothbrush (or two). Water out of the tap is not safe to ingest, so you’ll want to bring an extra in case you accidentally run your toothbrush under tap water while rinsing.
What is the total trip cost?
The final trip cost will be determined when we book flights in January, but typically the cost of food, transportation, donations, and housing is $500 + airfare (which can range between $500-$750). The first $500 deposit is due January 1st so we can secure flights. Since the initial deposit is used to purchase airfare it is nonrefundable.
Can I do fundraising to lower my cost?
Yup! We a variety of fundraisers that participants in the past have used to dramatically lower or eliminate any out of pocket cost for the trip. Each team member looking to raise money through fundraising is responsible for participating in fundraising opportunities, and only those participating in a fundraiser get a portion of the money raised.
What about spending money?
We will have a couple opportunities to explore local markets and purchase a variety of things. Keep in mind, whatever you bring you have to carry while there and back on a plane. All our food, travel, and accommodations are completely covered while in country, so all you need is some spending money for the market. $100 is generally sufficient for the average person, and if you’ve above average in your shopping prowess some larger places will accept debit/credit cards. Be sure to alert your bank before traveling if you plan to use a card, and bring all other spending money in new, US bills to be exchanged at the airport when we arrive.
What about tips for our driver and translator?
Tips for both our driver and translator are already covered in the trip cost. BUT, usually they go above and beyond and we all want to do something for them in addition. Generally $50 per person is a really nice gift at the end of the trip if you’re able to set it aside. You can also donate your unused Quetzales if you haven’t spent everything you exchanged.