WFPSE International Delegations
International delegations to Mexico, Nicaragua, Honduras, Colombia and Cuba give adults and teenagers first-hand knowledge of conditions and issues. Delegates experience visiting sweatshops, doing homestay visits with Latin American families in the countryside, meeting with indigenous leaders, learning from organizers and activists, and taking messages to the U.S. Embassy in country. Delegates gain the skills to work for peace and justice in their own communities.
WFPSE delegates include students, professors, community organizers, policy officials, journalists, and activists. Our delegates come from all different experiences and backgrounds. Our delegations are open to anyone with an open heart and an open mind. One particularly important component is extensive training about objectives, strategies, and tactics to influence change upon their return. Back in the U.S., WFPSE staff and returned delegates visit with Representatives, Senators, and the Department of State to share what we learned and urge for reform.
Be sure to check out our upcoming public delegations below and to read reports of our exciting and successful past delegations. We currently have closed delegations planned for Cuba and Mexico, contact Ron Garcia-Fogarty if you’d like to explore leading a delegation yourself, or click on this link for other delegations being organized in other parts of the country.
July 3-12, 2017
Join Witness for Peace Southeast’s Annual Youth Delegation to Nicaragua!
Witness for Peace has a long history of leading delegations to Nicaragua. The WFP Southeast region has led youth delegations to Nicaragua every summer for 20 years. Nicaragua is an ideal destination for youth who want to experience a different culture and way of living. It is a peaceful and beautiful country with abundant natural resources. It is also the poorest country in Central America.
U.S. policies and corporate practices have contributed to this extreme poverty. In the 1980’s, the U.S. organized, trained and armed a Nicaraguan paramilitary group that came to be known as the Contras. The resulting war left thousands of innocent Nicaraguans dead, and the country’s infrastructure in tatters. Currently, Nicaragua is party to the Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), which encourages Nicaragua to compete globally by attracting foreign investment with cheap and abundant labor. These companies set up factories, or maquilas, where many Nicaraguans work in harsh conditions for little pay.
A Witness for Peace Southeast youth delegation to Nicaragua will introduce you to Nicaraguan people and culture, teach you about the realities of free and fair trade, give you the skills to be an advocate for social justice, and allow you to explore some of Nicaragua’s most beautiful attractions while developing life-long friendships with other high school students.
Applicants must be between the ages of 15 and 19 to apply.
What to expect:
- Discover the history of Nicaragua
- Visit Managua and the Nicaraguan countryside
- Stay with Nicaraguan families
- Learn about the effects of trade policy in Central America
- Explore the benefits of fair trade
- Visit a beautiful national forest
- Meet other amazing teens
- Visit the U.S. embassy
Cost: $1,005 (plus airfare) Includes ground transportation, meals, lodging, interpretation, and reading materials.
For more information about the trip, and about scholarships and fundraising, please contact Ron Garcia-Fogarty at 919-951-5961 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ron Garcia-Fogarty: Ron is the former Regional Director for Witness for Peace Southeast (2014-2016), and is one of the two delegation co-leaders. A national of Nicaragua, Guatemala, and the USA, he spent his formative years in Nicaragua during the Sandinista Revolution. Ron identifies as Multiracial, Latino & White, is married, and has a young son who plans to join the teen delegation in 2020. Ron worked for social justice organizations for 20 years, and since 2017 is working as a freelance interpreter and translator. You can find more about Ron’s experience at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nicamerican
Bette Rainbow Hoover: Bette has taken a stand for freedom and social justice for more than four decades. As the director of the Washington, DC regional office of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), Bette honed her skills as an innovative leader and facilitator. She led Alternatives to Violence Project workshops in maximum security prisons and among teens in the inner city. Bette was a founder of CASA de Maryland, an organization that continues to provide solidarity and assistance to refugees, migrants and asylum seekers. She regularly travels to Nicaragua with teams of healers and peacemakers to work with Nicaraguan social activists. The Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) gives her a spiritual home for her peace work.