Honduras Service Trip 2006

By: James Miller
Group of H-SC men travel to Honduras

After a 14 hour day of travel the 10 men representing Hampden-Sydney College reached their home for the next week, the Honduyate Marina on Lake Yojoa in Honduras. For the next week these men will work side by side with local Honduran volunteers, doctors, and pastors to build a medical clinic that will serve the villages and people around Lake Yojoa. Tractor and diesel engine repair, block laying, cement and mortar mixing, passing out books and personal hygiene packets to children round out a typical day in the unpredictable weather of central Honduras.

Prior to the work day beginning the travelers meet for a breakfast of eggs, pineapple, refried beans, baleadas, juices, and coffee. A brief ride along the Northern Highway- dodging oncoming traffic, donkeys, construction and potholes, crossing rivers and cloud covered mountains- the work site appears tucked among grapefruit and lemon trees offering ample shade and abundant wildlife. By noon everyone has worked up healthy appetites sufficed by grilled tilapia caught in Lake Yojoa, fresh fruits, and pomegranate juice. If the rain holds off the north and west walls of the clinic will be more than halfway completed by dinner time tomorrow.

With the generous help of students from The Fuqua School, our travelers are loaded down with educational and hygienic packets to pass out to local children. The educational packets consist of 2 gallon sandwich bags filled with pens, pencils, paper, toothbrush, and sugarless gum. By the week's end more than 150 of these packets will be distributed to grateful children.

Of course our travelers would be remiss if they did not mention some of the recent friends they have encountered along the way who helped get them to where they are now. The patient and witty flight staff from Raleigh and Houston delivered the sleep deprived men to Honduras where they were further cared for by Honduran airport staff who went out of their way to help secure luggage that would have otherwise been lost or left behind. After securing their luggage in San Pedro Sula the Hampden-Sydney men were met by Israel Gonzales and his bilingual nephew Fabricio, who serves as a translator for his uncle. An hour into the trip west to the Honduyate, bad diesel fuel threatened to compromise the already tight itinerary had it not been for the gracious, thorough, and professional aid given by three United States Army soldiers and their roof racks in order to transport the students and luggage to their final destination.

The Hampden-Sydney College travelers are:

    Connellee Armentrout
    Watson Mulkey
    John Boswell
    Patrick Taylor
    Hunter Rooker
    Mike Handlan
    Chris Lindsay
    Accompanied by: Dean Klein, Wes Lawson, and James Miller with Cindy Haskell and Sarah Carlson.