Our Unique Approach
Every CoCoDA delegation includes two days of historical and cultural orientation. On the first day, you'll learn about your destination country from its citizens, hearing their stories and experiences. You'll visit historic sites and learn how the policies of the United States have impacted these countries and their people. You'll spend the second day exploring their present challenges and successes, meeting politicians as well as compasenos. CoCoDA staff will help you reflect on these experiences.
Every CoCoDA delegation spends at least part of their visit living with a host family. This allows you to truly understand the joys and challenges of living in Central America. You'll hear their stories, play with their children, eat their food and sleep under their roofs. You'll be amazed how quickly you overcome your language and cultural barriers and develop a friendship. Most delegates list their time with their host family as the highlight of their visit.
Every CoCoDA delegation includes your involvement in a community initiative or project. You'll work beside Central Americans on a project they've planned, organized and will eventually own. Your primary goal is not completing the project, but contributing to their efforts. In getting your hands dirty, you'll appreciate the obstacles they overcome every day. In the process, you'll better understand their priorities, challenges and needs.
While we think learning and working can be fun, a CoCoDA delegation also involves plenty of opportunities to play. Whether it's a pick-up game of soccer at the end of the day, playing games with the village children, climbing a volcano, exploring a colonial town, boating on one of the beautiful lakes, or relaxing on the beach, nearly every CoCoDA delegation offers time for relaxation and recreation.
A CoCoDA delegation is intended to expand your worldview. We'll give you daily opportunities to reflect on all you're learning about Central America, about the world and about yourself. At each point, we'll help you explore the "whys" of Central American life and politics. At the end of the trip, we'll provide a day of relaxation and decompression as you prepare for the most challenging aspect of any CoCoDA delegation – returning home.