Volunteering in Roatan, Honduras
Many people ask me about my favorite HIV/AIDS charity and how they can donate time and/or money.
Most of my volunteer efforts are dedicated to the people living with HIV/AIDS in Central America, specifically on Roatan Island. Roatan is located in the Caribbean, lying 40 miles off the northern coast of Honduras. One in seven people there lives with AIDS. I discovered it one Christmas vacation when the cruise ship I was traveling on docked for six hours. After taking a snorkeling excursion, I found myself in a double-kayak with a Honduran man named Leo. Looking straight ahead, Leo sang songs to me about heaven. “Today is my 33rd birthday,” he said, “and to celebrate, I’m going home to kiss my newborn twins, Leonce and Leah, and roast the pig in the front yard.” With the mountains of the Yucatan Peninsula coming towards me and the cool water splashing at the side of my face, Leo asked me, “Where do you witness God?” I told him I am an AIDS educator and witness God every day, everywhere I look. “That’s good,” he said, literally rowing my boat forward. “As long as you witness.”
I gave him my word that I would be back one day.
And so began my annual volunteer mission to Roatan. Click below to see a short documentary about what we do and check out the Alternative Spring Break section to find out how you can get involved.
Alternative Winter/Spring Break Program for College Students
Have you ever wanted to do more with your winter or spring break than just go on vacation? In January 2016, I traveled back to Honduras with a group of students from the Penn State Hillel organization for them to do just that. They raised money to cover the cost of the trip and materials and over the course of a week built a house for a family in need.
As part of the experience, each day a student wrote a blog post about what happened that day, which you can read here. The trip was such a success that it has turned into an ongoing alternative Winter/Spring break program. You can see more about this trip below.
Pictures & Videos from Past Trips
Handing out toothbrushes to the kids.
Handing out condoms to the workers.