Phoebe Hitchman from Vitamin Angels, will be accompanying Univera Associates for this year’s Serve First’s trip to Nicaragua. Read more about Phoebe below:
1) A short description of yourself. What you like to do, your profession, any family details you would like to contribute.
I am Vitamin Angels’ Manager of Corporate Relationships, and work to build partnerships with corporate supporters whose contributions help sustain Vitamin Angels’ programs. I’ve been on the Vitamin Angels team for over 4 years, and have traveled with our team and donor groups to visit our programs in Asia, Latin America, and the United States.
I work out of Vitamin Angels headquarters in Santa Barbara, CA, which also happens to be my hometown. I’m enthusiastic about nutrition and wellness, and most weekends you can find me and my chocolate lab either running on the beach or hiking back trails through the mountains.
2) What does Serve First mean to you?
Serve First’s support of Vitamin Angels has allowed our organization to reach millions of additional children around the world, and also children and mothers close to home in the United States and Canada.To me, Serve First epitomizes the incredible impact an organization can have when they dedicate time and effort to serving those in need around the world.
I am so grateful to Serve First for their continued partnership with Vitamin Angels, and hope that everyone at Serve First and Univera understands how significant your support is. I also truly appreciate Serve First’s goal of continuing to send Univera Associates into the field with our team, as I’ve experienced firsthand how these trips can truly shift one’s perspective of the world and our global community.
3) Describe how you felt when you found out that you had been chose to go on the annual Serve First trip.
I couldn’t be more excited. I have yet to visit Vitamin Angels’ programs in Nicaragua, and it’s been 2 years since I’ve been in the field with a team from Univera and Serve First. So I’m eager for the trip to arrive and return to Latin America with such an enthusiastic and energetic group of individuals!
4) What are your expectations about Nicaragua? What do you think it will be like there?
I’m anticipating Nicaragua to have stunning landscapes, hot and humid weather, and be home to many incredible people I know I’ll never forget. While Nicaragua is a popular destination for vacationers, many of its visitors don’t have the opportunity to experience parts of the country that our team will. I’m looking forward to meeting the children our programs serve, and understanding what it’s like to grow up, live, raise a family, and work in Nicaragua, and how we can collectively continue to support our in-country partners.
5) What are you going to do to prepare for your trip? Physically, mentally and emotionally?
As I always do before heading to Latin America, I’m working to brush up on my basic Spanish so I can chat with the mothers and children that we’ll meet! I’m also reading through some blog and journal entries I wrote during previous Vitamin Angels trips, and shifting my mindset to prepare for the culture shock I always experience upon visiting developing nations. I always find it helpful be ready for and completely open to new experiences when embarking upon a Vitamin Angels trip – because the journey is always an adventure!