In April of 2013, Univera Associates and Corporate Staff accompanied Serve First’s partner, Vitamin Angels, on a mission trip to Honduras. Below, learn more about the trip through the eyes of a Vitamin Angels employee.
Vitamin Angels Travel Manager Phoebe Hitchman will be accompanying the selected Univera Associates to Honduras on behalf of Vitamin Angels. Historically, Phoebe coordinated the trip. This will be her first observational field visit with Univera Serve First.
Hometown: Santa Barbara, CA
What is it like to work for Vitamin Angels?
I am responsible for all elements of the coordination of our donor field visits. I love my job, and am constantly inspired by the passion of my colleagues, the incredible support Vitamin Angels receives from our donors, and the strength and beauty of the women and children we serve.
What does Serve First mean to you?
I am so grateful for everything Serve First has done in support of Vitamin Angels. Through contributions, Serve First has provided life changing and life-saving nutrients to millions of children around the world. And through sending Univera Associates into the field with our team, Serve First has allowed so many individuals the chance to see the impact their donations are having on children all over the world.
Describe how you felt when you found out that you had been chosen to go on the annual Serve First trip?
I’m always looking forward to my next trip to the field – visiting our programs with donors is such an incredible adventure. I’ve coordinated the annual Serve First trip for the last three years, so I was very excited to learn I’d finally be accompanying the Univera team on an observational field visit! I know we’re going to have a fantastic time together.
What are your expectations about Honduras?
I’ve never been to Honduras – so I’m really looking forward to experiencing the culture of the country. I’m expecting Honduras to be humid and warm, with green landscapes, tasty food (I’m a huge fan of rice and beans!), and wonderful people. However, Honduras is also the second poorest country in Central America, so poverty will be very evident – especially in the remote and isolated communities we’ll be visiting. And, despite the obstacles they face, I expect the children and caregivers we’ll meet to be amazing people I know I’ll never forget.
How are you physically, mentally and emotionally preparing for this trip? I’m presently staying busy coordinating all the details of the trip – including creating the trip itinerary, arranging air travel, and staying in close touch with our in-country partner, Feed the Children, to ensure the distributions and site visits are planned. I’m also practicing my Spanish so I can have some simple conversations with the children we meet!