In December of 2022, a mission trip to Honduras of about 20 students sparked sophomore Marissa Powell to look for ways to improve the lives of children there.
Powell said the trip was made possible by her softball coach wanting the team to experience a mission trip in another country.
“I went with the softball team and additional students who were invited,” Powell said. “My coach wanted to give us an opportunity to go on a mission trip. Since she had gone to Thailand before, she wanted to give us a similar experience to her own.”
Being in Honduras, Powell said, inspired her to want to help the people she was surrounded by in the country.
“It was very eye-opening to see what else is going on in the world,” Powell said. “It exposed me to an entirely different culture, and it sparked something in me to want to do something.”
While on the trip, Powell met two children who motivated her to create change in their education.
“On the trip, we went to this village called Montes. I met lots of little kids who were so full of joy. There were two in particular that I really bonded with,” Powell said. “When I came back, I emailed Dudley Chancey and asked him if there was anything I could
do for these two kids relating to their education. He then told me the kids in this village don’t even have a school.”
Powell said building a school in Honduras is not going to happen any time soon, but it will be a missional goal in the coming future.
“In the area we want to build the school, there’s so many regulations, so it’s going to take a long time. We’ve already sent out surveyors to look at the field for the plans to be drawn up, but it’s up to the government,” Powell said. “We’re just waiting on God’s timing for when it’s going to be right. Right now, we are pouring into other ways we can donate. Montes will be in the future, but it’s something I’m looking forward to.”
Although mission trips can spark inspiration, Powell said they can also open ways for you to serve others locally.
“It’s not necessarily that you have to go be a missionary now. It’s opening you up to your own community and seeing where you can serve locally,” Powell said. “It’s not just one alleyway, it’s a segway into many, many more opportunities to spread the kingdom.”
Sophomore Olivia Hampton, who was also on the same mission trip, said Honduras opened her eyes to how blessed she is.
“It was amazing to see how blessed we are in a nation that we complain about a lot. The people just have so much joy in the little things they have,” Hampton said. “I worked in the medical clinic, and to see so many sick people come in and still have joy was really eye-opening.”
Hampton said her favorite aspect about the trip was creating relationships with the locals.
“Just because there was a language barrier, it doesn’t matter,” Hampton said. “They still want to interact and make a connection with you. After you’ve done service for them, just to see the joy on their faces is a feeling you never forget.”
Hampton said she is proud of Powell and excited for this fundraiser to take off.
“I’m so proud of Marissa for doing this. We complain about quite literally everything we have when those children don’t even have a school,” Hampton said. “I think the fundraiser is needed and also a need that can be met.”
In addition to the fundraiser, Dudley Chancey, who helps sponsor the Honduras mission trips, takes donations of Bibles and other basic necessities for Honduras. For those interested, visit the fundraiser website to learn more.