Thursday, October 29, 2015

SMA Peru Fall 2015 Collaborative Community Projects

St. Mary's Academy Community Project in Ollantaytambo, Peru November 2015

This fall, St. Mary 's Academy will be supporting various local public schools: Virgen de Fatima; Manco Inca; Urubamba Sacred. 

At Virgen de Fatima, students will be collaborating and working on the construction of the grandstands for sports gear. 

At Manco Inca, students will work on various projects for physical education classes including tennis.

At the secondary school, Urubamba Sacred School, students will be working with the local students inside the classroom as well as drawing a mural.

We will also spend time at Colegio Valle Sagrado in Urabamba for the sixth year. We have established a close relationship with this school.

Travelers, continue to educate through fundraising, and when you can, bring your fundraising to school. Checks can be addressed to the World Leadership Foundation. Cash will be placed in a service account and a single check will be written to the World Leadership Foundation from that account. If checks are made out to SMA, they will go into the same service account. Please clearly mark the note line with: Peru Community Project -Fall 2015

Thank you for your efforts. 

Any funds raised over and above the cost of this year's project will go into the World Leadership Foundation St. Mary's Academy account to continue the accumulation toward a TabLab for the Ollantaytambo schools. 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Before Departure, In the Air and On the Ground

Reminder of Responsibilities of Serving as an Ambassador to Peru from SMA

When you were accepted, you agreed to the following:

1.    To sit down with each of your teachers within two weeks before departure to complete a plan for the completion of necessary assignments.

2.    To attend at least three math tutorial sessions after returning.

3.    To engage actively and consistently in all pre-and-post-trip curricular assignments and meetings during rotation periods.

4.    To contribute to the well being of the group and understand that social and emotional health is a key characteristic to possess for this trip.

5.    To honor the disconnection from electronic devices on the trip by not bringing cell phone, music device or electronic games.

6.    To contribute to the blog maintained by the school chaperones.

7.    To actively promote the spirit week fundraising upcoming in January, and within 2015 to individually raise a minimum of $100 outside of the MS community for the Peru collaborative partnership projects.

Air Travel:

1. From the moment you climb on the activity bus to head to the airport until you are in the activity bus heading to Ollantaytambo, you must wear a secure waist or neck belt that fits under your clothing within which you keep your passport and boarding pass securely zipped. Never keep your passport and boarding passes in your hands, backpack or a clothes pocket at any time during travel.

2. You must have your assigned teacher-leader in line of sight at all times at the airport with few exceptions:  We are waiting at the gate and you have asked your assigned teacher-leader for permission to leave the waiting area. At that time, you must be in the company of and responsible for at least one other person. You must return with that exact person or those persons.

3. If you become separated from the group in the airport, contact an airport official and have them contact Mrs. Ashley’s cell phone number, which you will be given at the airport.

4. Before departing, give a copy of your passport to your SMA group chaperone and $30 for safe keeping so that you have some cash during our return trip through the airports.

5. Leave all electronic devices at home. You may bring your own personal ear buds or use those provided during flight.

Throughout the Trip:

1. Ensure that your assigned teacher-leader knows where you are at all times, as well as when you will be returning if you have been given permission to leave with at least two other travelers. That includes but is not limited to when we are in Ollantaytambo, Machu Picchu and waiting for the train or other transport. 

2. You are not allowed to enter anyone else’s assigned room other than your own. Once lights are out, you are not allowed to leave your room for any reason other than an emergency, and then you must immediately contact one of your the adult chaperones.

3. Once lights are out, honor others in and outside of your room by being quiet. Do not engage in horseplay or loud talking.

4. Take care of each other and the property that you encounter at all times.  Take care of yourself. Do not take any medication without conferring with Mrs. Ashley or Mr. Blair. 

5. Please do not shop or take photos in Ollanta until after we have been on the ground for five days. This allows you to form warm and direct connections with the place and people.

6. Dress conservatively in respect for the local cultural norms. Wear pants and closed-toe shoes whenever outside of the hotel. You may bring a pair of long basketball-type athletic shorts for playing soccer. Do not bring sandals for wear outside of the hotel, shorts for regular daily wear, tank tops, yoga pants, or fashion logo clothing and items.

Travel Itinerary

Hello Travelers and Parents,

Please find the travel itinerary below:


Thursday, November 12, 2015
Travelers meet at BESC at 6:15 a.m.
Depart in SMA Activity Busses at 6:45 a.m.
Check in at DIA on Delta Flight DL 1816 departing at 10:30 a.m.
     Arrive in Atlanta at 3:22 p.m.

Thursday, November 12, 2015
Check in for Delta Flight DL 0151 departing at 5:50 p.m.
Arrive in Lima, Peru at 12:25 a.m.
Check in for some sleep in Mira Flores region of Peru

Friday, November 13, 2015
Depart Lima, Peru on Lan Flight LA 2051 at 2:30 p.m.
Arrive in Cusco at 3:50 p.m.
Bus to Ollantaytambo after money exchange
Arrive in Ollantaytambo around 7:30 p.m. for light dinner


Tuesday, November 24, 2015
Depart Ollantaytambo mid-morning for Cusco
Depart Cusco on Lan Flight LA 2068 at 7:45 p.m.
Arrive in Lima at 9:10 p.m.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015
Depart Lima on Delta Flight DL 0150 at 1:55 a.m.
Arrive in Atlanta at 8:49 a.m.
Depart Atlanta on Delta Flight DL 1916 at 11:06 a.m.

Arrive in Denver DIA at 12:31 p.m. and greet families at the airport.

With Less Than Four Weeks to Departure

Hello Travelers and Parents,

Please find the packing list below:

Packing List:



__Take the Keirsey Temperament Sorter before leaving (the free one) and either print
A description of your type or make a note in your journal about your results:  
__Consider taking a probiotic supplement each day one to three weeks before departure
    to help develop a healthier, more resilient intestine.
__Complete Fundraising of $100 minimum to the service project. Make checks to World Leadership Foundation. Fundraising that arrives after we return will be allocated to needs perceived during the trip and to the WLS-SMA tablab project. We are close to realizing this!


__At passport control points, you are a tourist and not a service worker.
__Save enough cash to spend in airports on our way home (~$30). You may want to give this to either Mrs. Ashley or Mr. Blair for safekeeping.
__Bring trail mixes and protein bars for consumption during travel.
__Plan to drink only from your own water bottle and no one else’s EVER.
__Plan to wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap.
__Do not share lip balm, sunscreen or water bottles with anyone.
__Avoid touching your mouth, nose and eyes with unwashed hands.
__Do not pet dogs or cats unless they have a collar AND are pets in your homestay.
__Make an effort to speak a few words of Spanish or Quechua, even if it is challenging.
__Watch and observe the customs and local etiquette. Mimic what you observe.
__A smile goes a long way! Body language communicates so much.


In a money belt or passport pouch concealed beneath your clothing:

__Boarding passes, at times
__Cash (~ $100 per week and clean, crisp $20 bills)
__Extra cash (~$30 to spend on the return home)
__IMPORTANT: Please wear an inexpensive wristwatch, one without digital music and device apps.

In a medium-sized daypack to be used as a carry-on and for day trips:

__A copy of your passport (you may also give a copy to your chaperones)
__Student I.D. if you can locate it
__Your journal with either a description of your Keirsey Temperament results or journal
    entry about the results. Your journal needs to have all pre-trip homework prompts, a copy
    of the presentation rubric and a copy journal prompts.
__Plastic-sleeved-protected copies of photos of your family, pets or activities to share with
    your family for conversation starters.
__A few essential toiletries in small carry-on sizes such as toothpaste, 
    toothbrush, deodorant…zipped into in a clear Ziploc (in case your luggage  
    arrives late)
__Small container of hand sanitizer (in the same bag) NOT a substitute for handwashing
__Advil, Pepto, or other meds, as needed in small containers (in same bag)
__Small pack of hand wipes
__One change of clothes with undies (in case your luggage arrives late) and PJ’s for our 
    overnight in Lima on the way.
__Puzzles, travel games, novel(s), magazines or other non-electronic diversions
__Copy of key Spanish words and phrases (could be in your journal)
__Personal journal and several pens/pencils (write a little every day)
__Personalized water bottles with a tie or charm rather than marker. (Do not 
    share your bottles with anyone else ever!)
__As needed - extra pair of glasses or contacts w/small bottle of solution

In one large backpack, duffel or cargo bag that can be carried via a shoulder strap or straps: (Wheeled suitcases work well on some surfaces.)

__Light and sturdy shoes for working and hiking
__Athletic shoes (most likely you will wear these on the plane)
__Sandals or slippers for inside wear only
__Eight to ten pairs of socks

Consider bringing some clothing that you could leave behind as a contribution when you depart. We will be able to send clothes out to be washed or you can wash in your sink so you can pack less with this in mind. Pack fast-drying, lightweight clothing to minimize the weight of your pack and to recover more quickly from the daily light rain.

__One or two pairs of jeans (most likely you will wear jeans or sweats on the plane)
__Two pairs of lightweight cotton long pants for work that you would not mind
__A mix of seven short and/or long-sleeved shirts for layering
__One full-coverage rain jacket (the rainy season makes this important)
__One mid-weight fleece jacket
__Optional - one lightweight fleece vest
__A warm hat
__A pair of lightweight gloves for the chill
__A brimmed hat for sun protection
__Two pairs of work gloves
__One pair of sunglasses

__Seven pairs of underwear (Bring hand-wash soap to wash undies in sink)
__For girls – Three to four bras/cami
__Warm pajamas or sweat pants and a sleep shirt

Pack small containers of toiletries and use carefully. This will help minimize the weight of your pack. Don’t share toiletries to minimize sharing of germs.

__Shampoo (conditioner)
__Deodorant (important)
__Dental Floss
__Comb or brush
__Body lotion, as needed (as odor-free as possible)
__Razor, as needed
__Two more small bottles of hand sanitizer
__One large package of baby wipes or several smaller packs
__Packs of tissues for use in public restrooms or for runny nose
__For girls: feminine supplies
__Sunscreen with minimal odor
__Two or three lip balms (please don’t share lip balm with others)

Pack small containers of personal meds in carry-on and additional amounts, as needed, in your big pack. The WLS instructor will carry a comprehensive group medicine kit, so there is no need for you to pack items that are not included below:

__Prescription meds (asthmatics-bring at least two Albuterol inhalers)
__If you wear contacts, pack extra eye solution
__Cipro or z-pack for emergency care of diarrhea is not required but could be helpful (to be taken only when directed by local medic)
__Insect repellant
__Tweezers/nail clippers
__Advil or other pain med
__Pepto-Bismol tablets and Tums

Other items to include in your big pack:

__Flashlight with extra batteries
__Earplugs if you’re a light sleeper or unused to sharing a room
__Family gifts (bill cap, small toys/stuffed animals, markers, body lotion, sports equipment)
__Net bag or pillowcase for storing and sending out dirty clothes
__Several one-gallon and one-quart Ziploc bags for a variety of uses
__Playing cards, soccer or volleyball, hacky sack, UNO or other small games for diversion

__Digital camera (no internet/phone device) with charger
__Comfort item (stuffed animal or photo)


--Revealing clothing such as low cut shirts or shorts (only shorts to the knees) to avoid calling
  attention to the group
--Tank tops or sleeveless tops
--Recommended to avoid light-colored clothing that shows dirt easily
--Heavy weaves that dry slowly
--No Yoga or like stretch pants

--Electronics such as cell phones, smart phones, iPod, etc. - Except for the daily updates to the web site in order to communicate with parents and friends, we will be UNPLUGGED. J An SMA teacher will have a cell phone as will the WLS teachers.