Last fall, we welcomed Hannah to the Hospitality team in Guatemala. For some of you who are traveling on a Vision Team this year, Hannah will be your Team Coordinator when you arrive. Get to know a little bit more about Hannah’s passion for Guatemala and what impresses her most about Common Hope | Familias de Esperanza.

Position: Vision Team Coordinator
Time with CH: Five months
Favorite Guatemalan food: Beans and plantains!

1. How did you come to volunteer at Common Hope?
About four years ago I came to Guatemala through a study abroad program. Afterwards I continued to come back for various visits, working with a variety of non-profits here and reconnecting with the friends I had made. After graduating I wanted to commit more time to Guatemala, and working with Common Hope seemed to be the perfect fit for me! I was really impressed by all the work they were doing and wanted to be a part of it.

2. What was your first impression of Common Hope?
My first impression was: “Woah, they thought of everything!” There is so much more to the education component than I realized, and programs go way behind housing and the clinic. I also continue to be impressed by how organized everything is at Common Hope compared to my other experiences at non-profits, despite the size of the organization.

3. What was your first impression of Guatemala?
I immediately fell in love with Guatemala when I arrived years ago. My experience began with my host mother greeting me when I arrived at her home. She made me feel so welcome and treated me as her daughter from the very beginning. Soon after that first day I realized that this is just the way Guatemalans are. I have never met people who are so hospitable and welcoming anywhere else in my life. There is something about Guatemalans that makes you want to keep coming back.

4. What have you enjoyed most about working for Common Hope?
So far I’ve most enjoyed spending time with the affiliated families, whether it’s translating sponsorship visits or Day in the Life activities. The families are so open to share and warm. It’s great to get to know the families and for them to recognize you when they come to Common Hope or passing by them in town.