CONGRATULATIONS to all the Challengers on our first six Charity Challenges of 2011, biking from Guatemala to Honduras, the inaugural Nicaragua Volcano Challenge, Brazil's Chapada Diamantina Challenge , Guatemala's first Caribbean Kayak Challenge, Perú´s Cerani Pass and Ecuador's Volcano Challenge. Nicaragua's second volcano Challenge is set for 3rd-6th November and the third Guatemala Volcano Challenge dates are set for 27th November -2nd December.

Click on the following for our most recent official project reports for Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Perú and Brazil.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Independence Day and "Antorchas" in Guatemala

Guatemala celebrates it's Independence Day from Spain on 15th September, since 1821. Traditionally everyone from all over the country lights firey torches (antorchas) and run...where they run, who knows, though they run.

Usually led by Police Cars and ambulances, sirens blazing, whistles blowing, here in Antigua, the Central Park was full of 1000's people, lighting the torches drenched in gasoline, from the central flame, which signifies peace, independence and harmony, spreading it over the country.

With all the older children from Neil's English classes in our Santa María project, and some fathers, we ran from the Central Square in Antigua, along the cobbled streets and out into the country, heading up the side of Agua Volcano.

One of the fathers works for the Bomberos Voluntarios, the voluntary ambulance men, so he managed to commandeer the Santa María ambulance for us, and its siren! We also had a pickup truck trailing us, a welcome respite when the hills up the volcano became steeper, and as the traditional buckets of water were thrown.

Before Santa María, we all jumped out and ran the remaining couple of kilometers into town and up to the Central Square there, where we proudly planted our antorcha outside the mayor´s office.

Our relationship with the local Police is good, so they invited us all to "Super Cola", for our efforts! A proud moment for all the volunteers, children and fathers of the kids.


How does GVI Phoenix make a difference?

The following film was made in Guatemala, though the message is the same across all GVI Phoenix projects