AMIGOS training takes place at the beginning of all our programs and is a crucial component of every project.
Throughout the year, we develop and refine our training curriculum for AMIGOS students. We cover topics like community development, health and safety, cultural adjustment, mental health, leadership skills, activities for kids, simulations, Spanish practice, and more. These modules equip students with tools and insight before they immerse themselves in a new country.
We care deeply about our students and we believe our training prepares them not only for their AMIGOS program, but for success in college and their career.
Students who join a local AMIGOS chapter train with other students from their area throughout the spring leading up to their summer program. Students who join the National Chapter spend several days training together before flying as a group to Latin America.
Last weekend, 20 students met in Houston to spend several days preparing for their summers in Pérez Zeledón, Costa Rica and San Juan, Dominican Republic.
A whole lot of information is packed into just a few days! If we needed a boost of energy, the whole group took a Zumba Break.
Skye says, “I learned a lot at Gateway Training. We learned about cultural differences and how to deal with them and how to take care of ourselves and our friends. I really enjoyed the simulations we did.” Josie also liked the simulations, stating, “it gave me a chance to think about how people might feel when we come into their country and it really made me think about what I want to do going into the Dominican Republic.”
Students also got some free time to get to know new friends. John says, “my favorite part of training was all the new people I got to meet. I feel like I bonded with them way more easily than almost anyone at my school. It was a great time and a great experience.”
“Training helped me understand the significance of what we’ll be doing and understand the meaning of doing volunteer work, especially in a culture different from my own. Now I know how to be culturally sensitive and how to build the best relationship possible.” -Melissa