What 8 weeks as a volunteer in Ecuador can teach you: Feelings, Experiences and Tips

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1) Coca-Cola makes everything feel better. (It’s the pure cane sugar here…amazing.)

2) Never travel without climbing gear.

3) Before a weekend excursion, be sure to make a list of things to see/do using Lonely Planet, Wiki Travel, and Trip Advisor.

4) Hostals for $8 a night are soooo much better than 5 star hotels which run you dry.

5) Don’t drink the water. Ever.

6) Always try to learn a language in a country that natively speaks it.


7) Save money: opt for lots of smaller weekend trips rather than one trip to the jungle or Galapagos or Cotopaxi crater.

Andddd…for the more in depth lessons:

1) It’s always more adventurous when you travel with the person you love to be with most.


2) Nothing is a better way to grow as a couple than to spend 8 weeks without cell phones and other ways of technology, teaching you to rely on personal communication.

3) You can manage money better if you keep cash on you instead of always using a credit/debit card…use an ATM once a week and see how much more conservative you can be!

4) The Lord will speak to you in new ways when you get uncomfortable and adventure to new places.

5) When you spend time learning about a 3rd world culture and family, you can begin to appreciate just how much you are blessed with…although you will never fully understand the depth of God’s provision for you.


6) If you want to learn if you can marry someone, go to a new country alone with them for 8 weeks…you’ll have to implement in the present what you will say in a future vow.

7) Never take advantage of the friends and family you have supporting you from thousands of miles away…update them often and ask them about home. Don’t just drop off the earth for the time you’re gone.

8) Nothing is quite like home.

WE’RE COMING HOME TOMORROW!!!!!! It’s bittersweet. Mostly sweet as of right now (because we’re ready for some good ole southern fried food and hot showers and our own beds), but we will miss Ecuador so much. This experience has taught us so much, and surely will continue to show changes in us for much time to come. Thanks for all your support and encouragement throughout these past 2 months…and we can’t wait to see you guys when we return!

By Jessica Genoble

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