By Samantha LoCurto, Director of Public Relations, Presentation High School, San Jose, California

This June, ten Presentation High School, San Jose, California, students and staff traveled to Nicaragua on an eight-day immersion trip. They visited Sister Rachel Pinal, PBVM, (standing second left) and two local schools in Somotillo. These schools are recipients of the money fundraised during the year’s Mission Drive, which raised $22,000. These schools don’t require students to pay tuition allowing even low-income students the opportunity for education. They work tirelessly to maintain funding and keep their doors open. The donations help pay their teachers, provide scholarships for students, and maintain the schools’ facilities.

They also spent the week working with Bridges to Community, where they helped build a home for a family in need in Mojon. As a gesture of thanks, the community held a beautiful impromptu Liturgy of the Word for the group on top of a hill, looking over the lush landscape.

Presentation High School, Director of Community Involvement, Lindsay Swoboda shared, “This trip was a wonderful combination of service and immersion. We were able to create genuine relationships with the community members while also having the opportunity to experience the natural beauty of Nicaragua.” A life-changing trip for every participant, these students have gained a deeper sense of solidarity with the people of Nicaragua and broadened their own perspectives.