What are Support Teams?
Support Teams are groups of friends, community members, students or families that spend 1 week of volunteer service learning at Safe Passage—and learn firsthand who we are and what we do.
As a Support Team member, you will:
- Connect with like-minded travelers and volunteers
- Discover new cultures and expand your global perspective
- Participate in a tour of our program and neighborhood, including a viewing of the Guatemala City dump, and learn about our community and our impact
- Become a Safe Passage expert
- Plan and implement fun, educational activities, participate in English Program classes, and interact with our youngest students at the Escuelita
- Contribute time and resources towards our mission
No Spanish? No problem. We speak from experience when we say that non-Spanish speakers do make meaningful connections with our students. We know you will, too.
What will your week look like?
- Arrive in Guatemala!
- Orientation with your Safe Passage Support Team coordinator
- See the Guatemala City garbage dump and our program
- Meet our Executive Director and program coordinators
- Lead engaging, educational activities in our classrooms
- Take a Mayan language class
- Enjoy recess with our youngest learners at the Escuelita
- Meet Creamos mothers and see their recycled jewelry shop
- In Antigua, take a Guatemalan cooking class with your team
- Free day! Visit a coffee farm or hike a nearby volcano
- Fun outing, usually to the waterpark, with the students your team worked with
- Share your Safe Passage story, your journey is just beginning!
Fundraising for your trip
Fundraising increases team enthusiasm and spreads awareness about your trip. Many teams are able to raise 100% of their team fees* and team donation—and there are many ways to do it! We have a handful of helpful guides to get you started down the road to fundraising success.
*Please note: team fees are not tax-deductible.
Are you ready to meet us in Guatemala?
From lodging and logistics to translation and travel, our trained staff is here to assist you with every aspect of your visit. Our goal is to help your trip be memorable, meaningful, and empowering. We encourage you to read through our Support Team Handbook in advance of your planning. If you have any questions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Form a Team
- Gather 8-12 members (double teams can have up to 24 members). Note: team members must be 18 years of age or older to travel independently, and at least 15 years of age and accompanied by an adult chaperone.
- Pick a week: confirm with our office that the week you’d like to visit is available, then plan for and purchase Sunday-Sunday plane tickets
- Pay your deposit: send your $500 team deposit to our U.S. office
- Fundraise: $695 non-deductible fee per team member includes all in-country transportation, lodging, meals, and Safe Passage activities and staff service.
- Share your story: tell everyone you meet why you support Safe Passage students!
In addition to team member fees, we ask that each team commit to a fundraising goal of at least $2500 to give as a donation to Safe Passage. Your contribution provides valuable resources to aid our progress—and fundraising is a wonderful way to engage family and friends in your efforts.
Join a Team
If you’d like to participate in a Support Team, but don’t have a group to travel with, you can join one of our Open Teams with other individuals and families. Contact our Teams Coordinator about open teams and we will help you find the best option for your schedule. Individual team members contribute a $100 deposit plus their team fee of $695 to cover in-country expenses including lodging, meals, ground transportation, and Safe Passage activities and staff service. The Open Team experience is similar to the normal Support Team experience, although the groups tend to be smaller, you have more of a personal experience.
What are our teams saying about their Safe Passage experience?
“This is an intense week that will drain you mentally and physically…and you will love every second.” —Arne, Washington
“In this one week along I have fallen in love with Guatemala. The best part was seeing smiles on the childrens’ faces. It made me understand why we’re here.” —Jonathan, Maine
“Safe Passage is a great organization and makes a meaningful and wonderful experience for all involved.” —Jenn, Vermont
“The best word I can come up with is “Wow.” It was a joy and privilege to be a part of the amazing work being done.” —Brian, Washington
“Even though it was emotional, it was the best week of my life.” —2015 Support Team member
“This experience was inspirational, instructional and enlightening. I feel I got more than I gave and would like to close that gap.” —Bill, Colorado
“I will recommend organizing a Support Team to others because it gives in-depth insight into the benefits of [Safe Passage] and how donations are utilized.” —2015 Support Team member