MILE SERVICE: Artists and Fans embark on week-long relief missions as an introduction to service in Guatemala

The MILE will return to Guatemala, December 2-10 2017.  Download the application HERE.
 
Your trip fee is entirely tax deductable. We do not allow crowd-funding of our MILE Service Trips, please contact us if you have questions regarding this policy.  The trip is currently full, applicants will be placed on a waiting list and approved in the order in which their application was received. 
 
The MILE Service Trip is a week-long excursion to Guatemala, an introduction to service through cultural immersion and short-term relief projects in and around beautiful Lake Atitlan in the Guatemalan highlands.  Participants will learn about local Mayan and Guatemalan cultures, customs, and social structure while working together through a variety of simple projects arranged by the MILE to meet the ever-changing needs of the indigenous people.  These projects are wide and varied, and may include manual labor.  These trips are open to the public on an application basis, with rolling acceptance. 
 
We are raising funds to increase our group's impact in Guatemala this year, please CLICK HERE to learn more. 
 
Please contact MILE Board Member Jason Spiewak at jason at jlsmgmt.com with any questions.
 
Thank you for your interest!  
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
 
Q: Do I need to get updated vaccines or should I travel with antibiotics to Guatemala?
A: Please consult with your doctor prior to travel.  Most MILErs did not need to make any special medical arrangements.
 
Q: Should I get travel insurance?
A: Yes, the MILE encourages you to secure a basic policy to cover you during your trip.  Coverage is very affordable ($38 for a minimum level of coverage) through services such as Travel Guard (https://www.travelguard.com/traveladvisory/guatemala.asp
 
Q: How much manual labor should I expect to do?
A: That will vary, but please be prepared for the potential to work hard.  Some of the relief work is easy, some of it is physically demanding.  You are absolutely NOT required to do manual labor, but it is possible that youll be asked to be physically active.  Please consult your doctor to ensure that you are physically fit enough to participate.  
 
Q: Will my MILE experience run perfectly, everything according to schedule?
A: Absolutely not.  The laid-back pace of the Guatemalan culture is a huge variable, and being flexible in this environment is necessary.  We can promise you a well-coordinated effort, but this trip is geared toward people who are easy-going and can roll with the punches! 
 
Q: Is the cost of my MILE trip tax deductible?
A: Please consult your tax professional for proper filing, but yes, your donation to the MILE should be eligible as a standard 501(c).3 donation
 
Q: What if something comes up, and I am unable to participate at the last minute?
A: All fees are non-refundable, however you will have the ability to transfer your participation, have someone attend in your place subject to the MILE’s review and approval of the replacement participant. 
 
Q: What meals are included in the cost of the trip?
A: Breakfast, lunch and dinner will be provided every day while on Lake Atitlan.  Food is not included in Antigua or Guatemala City.
 
Q: Are local transportation costs included?
A: Yes, with the exception of special excursion travel.  To be clear, all of the group’s travel to and from our relief projects is included in the cost of the trip, as well as group transportation to and from the airport in Guatemala City.
 
Q: What about special dietary needs?
A: We are able to accommodate most special dietary needs, please let us know in advance of any such restrictions or requirements so we can make a best effort to meet those needs.  
 
Q: What are the accommodations like?  Will I be “roughing it”?
A: Absolutely not!  The accommodations will be clean and comfortable, comparable to a three or four star hotel in the US.  The MILE campus for the May trip includes several buildings and everyone – artists and fans – will be staying in the same location.
 
Q: What can I expect in terms of the quality of food?
A: All meals are prepared freshly every day - a mix of traditional Guatemalan fare and American staples prepared in with care, using only local ingredients.  Ask any former MILE trip participant – the food is excellent!
 
Q: Is it essential that I be fluent in Spanish?
A: No, we will be traveling with fluent Spanish speakers and it is not necessary for you to speak Spanish.  
 
Q: What if I’m a recording artist, interested in getting involved?
A: The MILE is always looking for new artists to participate.  Please contact us at www.gomile.org for more information.
 
Q: What if I’m not an official MILE artist?  Can I bring an instrument? Are there performance opportunities for me?
A: Absolutely! Everyone is welcome to contribute their talent, to bring an instrument, to raise their voice.
 
Q: What can I expect during a typical MILE Service trip?
A: Heres a sample schedule for the entire week
PLEASE NOTE: this is only a sample itinerary, actual schedules are built based on a number of factors.
 
Saturday – arrive in Guatemala City where you will be greeted by MILE staffers and escorted to a hotel for an overnight stay 
Sunday – Morning: transportation through the Guatemalan countryside to beautiful Lake Atitlan.  Evening: casual house concert performed by MILE artists.
Monday – A tour of Casa de Palomo, the original site of MILE activity in Guatemala and an important orientation point for current MILE activity 
Tuesday – Morning: musical performance and tour of the elementary school in Cerro De Oro.  Afternoon: service work at a hospital in nearby Santiago.  Evening: casual house concert performed by MILE artists.
Wednesday – Transportation to local agricultural center to participate in a seasonal harvest of either coffee or avocado.  
Thursday - Beautification project at a local school, including painting and cleaning of facilities in need of repair.
Friday – Transportation to Panajachel for a day of excursions.  Options include shopping, hiking, many local restaurants, and the largest zipline in Central America.  Additional funds are required for excursions.  Evening: casual house concert performed by MILE artists..  Evening: casual house concert performed by MILE artists.
Saturday – Transportation to Antigua for an overnight stay prior to return to Guatemala City.  Antigua is an old and beautiful city, with many local museums and shops.  In the evening we’ll convene for a family-style dinner.
Sunday – Transportation to Guatemala City airport for return flights to the US.
 

 

 

1012 Coussons Road  -  Dubberly, Louisiana  -  71024   -   318.464.5060

MILE is a subsidiary of Relief Missions of Louisiana, a 501(c)3 nonprofit established in 2005.