Two Weeks in Guatemala

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Finally sharing some photos with you guys today from my trip to Guatemala!

I was lucky enough to spend two weeks filming two documentary shorts for Good Neighbors USA, a humanitarian non-profit based in Los Angeles, CA, where I work as their managing editor/brand specialist. The trip was a whirlwind of back-to-back filming and photography assignments, and one of the very best parts of the experience was that I got to work with two amazing girls: videographer Kylie Turley and photographer Mimi Yip. Together, the three of us spent every day traveling to film the stories of three children and their families, spending sunrise to sunset together. Each day, we saw firsthand the extreme poverty that is so prevalent in Guatemala but that you’re so used to seeing only through pictures or videos. It was surreal to actually be there in person, meeting the families and kids, seeing their living conditions and hearing their stories. We also met the wonderful staff of Good Neighbors Guatemala (our affiliate field office) and saw how many dedicated people it takes to start helping affect change; they work so hard to bring education, health care, and safe living standards to these communities. The Los Angeles office I work in focuses on fundraising and marketing, so this was my first venture out to the community projects where I could truly see donors’ money being put to action. The kids, the schools, the families, and their everyday living conditions…it was eye-opening in every way.

But it wasn’t all about work! We did get a weekend off in between shooting and headed out to Lake Atitlan to ride horses and sail around the volcanoes, and then to Antigua to shop all of the handmade goods at the marketplace. It was an amazing, amazing trip overall and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to go and for all of the incredible people I got to spend so much time with.

Here are some highlights from the trip…

Kylie & Mimi filming and taking photos of 8-year-old Maria as she made fresh tortillas in her home with her mother.

 

Kylie filming some adorable kids at an elementary school in Patzicia, Guatemala.

Students attending class at a Good Neighbors school in Patzicia, Guatemala.

At the Antigua marketplace

Volcanoes at Lake Atitlan…I could’ve just stood there and stared at them forever!

Horseback riding in San Pedro around Lake Atitlan

Some of the very sweet kids we met in Acatenango, a village about 1 hour away from Guatemala City

Kylie and Mimi back in action at a school in Patzicia

Filming an interview with the Capul Sian family in Loma Blanca

Bringing cookies and bread to a family in La Fragua

Beautiful Antigua

Two little boys play on a hill in Acatenango

Couldn’t have spent 24 hours/day with two cooler girls

Cutting cake for our last day of work…so many thanks to the staff at Good Neighbors Guatemala!

To see all of the photos from the trip (and learn more about the non-profit I work for, go here.

Have you guys been to Guatemala? Or done any traveling elsewhere lately? Being able to do this was easily one of the most wonderful, educational, and memorable experiences of my life!

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One thought on “Two Weeks in Guatemala

  1. hooray! i love this post, celeste! you are so sweet. seriously – this trip was the best ever. so memorable and such a blast with such cool people! we really lucked out :) miss you girlie!

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