Guidelines for Good Mission
CAREFUL WITH GIFT-GIVING! Please do not give out toys, candy, stickers, money, etc to any individuals. If you give out something small to one person, 100 people will be asking immediately. We want to come to build relationships with people – not dependency, and not the stereotype that the North Americans come to give stuff away! Equally, if you as a group bring gifts, always talk to PRESGOV staff about the most appropriate way to give – usually it is appropriate to leave things with the Presbytery leadership or with a local church session so that they can decide best how to handle it.
What you CAN share is yourself and your presence. Talk to people, through a translator if necessary. Bring photos, postcards of your families, your church and your community.
What should I bring? PACK LIGHT!
– Passport: (to keep in safe place during the trip)
– Copies: 2 copies of passport (one to always keep with you during the trip, one for your trip leader to keep)
– Plane tickets
– Cash (NOT travelers checks) for the following kinds of items: church offerings, soft drinks, personal purchases, souvenirs, admission fees (e.g., museums, etc.). This amount may vary from $50 to $200.
– Peptobismol (preferably in tablets, some doctors recommend taking 2 tablets with questionable meals to help avoid infection)
– Prescription drugs you take regularly
Changes of clothing, not luxurious but not too worn – it is important to Guatemalans to look neat.
Skirt: Women should include a long skirt for worship
Shoes: Comfortable, well broken-in walking shoes and a pair of flip-flops or lightweight
Sandals to wear at night and to the bathroom. Possibly one other pair for church.
– Raingear: A lightweight rain poncho and collapsible umbrella in rainy season (May through October).
– Jacket: If part of your trip will be in the highlands, bring a light sweater or polar fleece.
– A hat for rain or sun.
– Swimsuit – one piece.
– Construction clothes: If doing construction work, bring one change of old, lightweight clothes.
– Toiletries and other small items such as a washcloth in a Ziploc bag, and extra bags for things you want to keep dry, protected, or separated, such as dirty clothes.
– Insect repellent
– Small flashlight for when the electricity goes out
– Bacterial hand wash
– Miscellaneous items such as a small notebook, pens/pencils; small flashlight
See your travel clinic for information on vaccinations: usually Hepatitis A and Typhoid vaccinations are recommended.
Please DO NOT bring diamonds or other expensive jewelry or watch, a skimpy bathing suit, high heels, dressy clothing, a sports jacket or tie, heavy coat, electronic items and portable computers
What are some telephone numbers to give my family in case of emergency?
Please let your family and friends know that regular calls or e-mails are not a possibility, but that in the case of an emergency they can call Philip Beisswenger, 011-502-3033-1746
Or e-mail Philip: firstname.lastname@example.org
The PRESGOV office can be reached by phone: 001-502-4192-2554, or by e-mail: Presgov1@yahoo.com