Over my Janterm, I was given the opportunity to go to Costa Rica with the Samford cheer and dance team. It was so awesome to be able to serve alongside my teammates all week in such a beautiful country, and I wouldn’t have wanted to spend my Janterm any other way. While in Costa Rica, we were able to sightsee as well as serve, and it was an experience I will never forget. It was my sixth missions trip to Costa Rica, but I honestly never get tired of it because I love being in the country, and I love being able to serve the people of Costa Rica (aka the ticos!!).
Our trip started out sightseeing, and we got to go to the beach where had a short devotional and talked about what our week would look like. We then went zip lining down a mountain and ended the day with a crocodile river tour.
On our second day, we worked in a community and hosted a “block party” for the kids in the neighborhood, which was similar to a VBS. We did face painting and handed out balloons, chalk and jump ropes. We also performed skits and told Bible stories. Another cool thing we did was perform the Samford fight song for all the kids. They absolutely loved it! It was such a cool experience to represent Samford.
For the next two days, we helped build an orphanage across the road from the mission compound, where we were staying, by sanding and painting the walls. We were also able to pray over the homes for the orphans who will eventually live there.
Not only were we able to help with the construction of a new orphanage, but we were also able to help in an active orphanage and daycare called the Abraham Project. Throughout the day, we helped with classes and got to do arts and crafts with the kids in the daycare. At night, we helped take care of the orphans in their homes so that the house parents could have a date night. One of the cool things about the Abraham Project was that they want the orphans to see what a healthy, Christian marriage looks like because so many had been taken out of broken families, so instead of the kids being raised by women, they are raised by a Christian couple. It was great to be able to help out the parents in any way we could!
Another cool experience in Costa Rica was being able to attend a church service. It was awesome experiencing how a different culture worships God. One of my favorite things that happened in Costa Rica was attending that church service because at one point, they started singing the hymn “How Great Thou Art” in Spanish, and it was so cool being able to sing the song in two different languages worshipping the same, powerful God.
I am so thankful that I got to travel over JanTerm and serve. I would highly recommend it to anyone in the future!