I recently watched an amazing documentary called, "Living on One Dollar". The film is about four university students who decided to travel spend a summer with only $1 a day in a rural village in Guatemala. They battled with financial and emotional stress, diseases like E. Coli, and lost 20 pounds within 6 weeks. However, with all that they went through, they found "hope in the inspiring lives" of their neighbors and friends. Zach, Chris, Sean, and Ryan now dedicate their lives telling these stories to inspire the world to confront global poverty. To learn more about the film and their vision, go to their website www.livingononedollar.org Watching this movie brought me back to my travels to India and Ecuador. Last year, I had the opportunity to go on two missions trips with my fiancé, Chester. My amazing uncle is part of a nonprofit called Fundacion Ananta which helps people in need in Kolkata, India. And in August, we went with a group of wonderful nurses from a nonprofit called Nurses for the Nations to Ecuador. Chester and I were the translators as well as videographer and photographer. You go on these trips thinking you are going to help someone in need…However, not only does that happen, but the people there help YOU out so much more. I was touched by everyone who I encountered in India and Ecuador. Although they had so little, their smiles were always filled with so much love. I was scared to pull out my big camera the first few days. I didn't want to intrude or make them feel uncomfortable. But by the second or third day, I gained a sense of courage and asked the people if I could take their photo. To my surprise, everyone I asked smiled and nodded yes. They were so open and willing to share their story within them. The best part? Seeing their reaction when I showed them their photo. Their faces would light up and their smiles would grow even bigger. The people in India and Ecuador taught me to have gratitude, to be close to my faith, to thank God for every moment in my life and all that I have, and to always love one another.
Let us always meet each other with smile, for the smile is the beginning of love. -Mother Teresa
Here are a few photos from both India and Ecuador.
To view the video Chester and I made, go to the following link: https://vimeo.com/45544070
Ecuador's video will be released soon!