by Mary Kate Bandstra / firstname.lastname@example.org
Two senior girls have had their fair share of traveling this winter season. Senior Kendra Rozendaal traveled to the country of Honduras with the group PATTH, Pella Area Teams Travel to Honduras, and visited the cities of Guaimaca and Tegucigalpa.
With a team of doctors, nurses, and surgeons, Rozendaal and her team of 35 were there to serve as God’s hands and feet in any way possible. “While the surgeons stayed at the hospital, us teens put a lot of focus on the little kids. We played with frisbees, tennis balls, jump ropes, parachutes, and painted nails. Then the last 2 days I helped take vitals–so blood pressure, listened to respiratory sounds and temperature,” said Rozendaal.
The light of Jesus was shown through the helping hands and smiles of the Pella volunteers. “My biggest takeaway from this trip would be remembering that there are people everywhere, in a third world countries and even here around us, struggling,” she said. “They all need something more than food, shelter and clothes. They all need Jesus, and everyone is equipped well enough to go out into the world, whether that be down the road from their house or across the ocean, to share the love of Christ.”
Senior Hannah Van Sant flew across the world for her trip to China, the country in which she was born, so that she could gain a better understanding of where she came from. Visiting five cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, Hannah visited art museums and the third tallest building in the world. “The highlights of my trip would be seeing the Tiananmen Square, the Terracotta Warriors and Horses, the Great Wall of China, going on a night cruise in Shanghai, and petting a panda at a panda observation center in Chengdu,” said Van Sant.
The knowledge gained from such a trip has impacted Hannah and widened her view of culture. “I learned so much about China’s culture, lifestyle, and history. One thing that struck out the most to me was the different kinds of Chinese architecture! When I was in Shanghai, I saw that some buildings were influenced by the British and French,” she said.
Van Sant got to visit the city that she was born in, Hangzhou, where her and her mom were able to meet up with an old friend. “He was someone that my parents met at the hotel when they were adopting me fifteen years ago. He helped my parents get a better understanding of Chinese culture and traditions. He still stays in touch with us by sending us Chinese New Year’s cards and gifts, and we send him Christmas cards and gifts as well,” Van Sant added.