Students return after volunteer trip

A group from North Peace Secondary School has returned from a trip to El Salvador.

However, the group wasn’t on vacation, they were helping to build an elementary school in an area near Suchitoto, a town less than 50 km outside San Salvador, the capital city.

This is the fourth year the NPSS has done similar projects. There were three chaperones that accompanied the 18 students.

Sarah Huggins is a biology teacher at the school. She says the students helped build the school during the mornings and then in the afternoons they learnt about the history and culture of the area.

Huggins says when they got to the town, the school was behind schedule in its construction, but that when they left, they had managed to put the construction ahead of schedule.

She says she was really impressed at how hard the students worked while there and that they had given up two weeks of their summer holidays donating their time to work on the project.

Sage Burley is one of the students who went on the trip. He says it was an eye opening experience that really made him understand how lucky many Canadians are to have a good education.

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The school was being built as a replacement of an older school that had been constructed from mud and wood. The new school was being built with brick and was better constructed to withstand earthquakes.

The students and teachers had done various fundraising projects and raised $25,000 to go towards the Seeds of Learning, an organization which helps to further education prospects in both Nicaragua and El Salvador, says Huggins.

She says the money they raised went towards paying for building supplies and school supplies.

The students also went beyond just helping to build the school while they were there. Burley says the well for the town had been broken for around three months and the people had to haul water in buckets from another community to use.

The group used some of their fundraising money to help fix the well and, in exchange, people from the community helped build a garden for the school.

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