Reviews of VISIONS programs

I had a lot of personal victories on our program. Even in the few days I've been home, my family has already noticed a difference in how I act, and my confidence. VISIONS is an incredible opportunity, and I would do it again in a heartbeat.

—Erin Phillips, Pennsylvania

One of the things that I liked the most about this cultural experience is the opportunity to give unconditionally, and yet to always receive something positive in return.

—Giulio de Renaldy, Italy

Ali had a great experience in every way—getting to know the BVI, feeling that she made a difference, making good friends, learning about herself.

—Penny Bauersfeld, Parent, New York

I felt that I got really attached to some of the projects we did.

—Danielle Niremberg, New York

The staff was all very supportive and welcoming. I felt like I really bonded with them in the first few days. I felt like I could go to them and tell them anything. They were amazing! I loved the entire experience—the people, the experiences, I loved it all! I want to do another VISIONS program next summer!

—Maddie Robbie, California

All the staff members were very kind and understanding. They tried to help us in all kinds of ways. Especially during the circle, the staff made a great effort to run it smoothly.

—Jiwon Shin, British Columbia

I had the most amazing summer ever. I loved everything about my VISIONS experience. The group was filled with kind, wonderful students and the leaders were organized and fun. I hope to do my 4th VISIONS trip next year!

—Laurel Stanley, Massachusetts

I’d like to add how incredibly amazing this summer was! Yuth, Kenny, David, Katie and Greg were awesome leaders. There was never a dull moment with Yuth around—she’s one of the funniest people I’ve met and kept me laughing the whole summer! Cambodia was amazing. Volunteering for the Mighty Girls was a pleasure—such inspirational women.

—Andrew Goodrum, Florida

The leaders were all so great! I think that our group was lucky to get such a wonderful group of staff.

—Lizzie Edwards, Oregon

You guys are awesome. Thank you so much for giving me an experience I will remember for the rest of my life.

—TJ Mandelkorn, Washington

I loved my entire VISIONS experience. From the food, the people, the music, and the laughter, it was pretty close to perfect. If given another chance, I would definitely go back and I hope I will be able, when I am older, to see everyone again.

—Claudia Wu, California

Liam had an amazing, life changing time in the DR, and hopes to do another program next summer through VISIONS. Family members have remarked that Liam seemed to have grown three years older and wiser in just two and a half weeks time in Santo Domingo. Thank you so much for exposing our son to a whole other world, filled with experiences that were eye opening and enriching on so many levels. VISIONS is simply wonderful.

David Daniels, Parent

With VISIONS, you get so much more than you ever could have expected. I felt safe and loved and comfortable with everyone there. I came to think of the other participants and the Dominicans as my new family. I learned so much just by walking down a street with a barefoot child in my arms. He couldn't speak a word of English and my Spanish wasn't all that great, but I don't think either one of us felt odd or like an outsider. That’s how all of the people were. They welcomed us with open arms and they filled your heart to a point that I cried when it was time to go. VISIONS is a great service and I'm definitely going back next summer.

—Adea Nelson, Douglasville, GA

I loved all of the counselors on the trip and without them it wouldn't have been anywhere near as good.

—Alexander Waggoner, Washington

I loved my leaders so much! Dana, Sean, Ben, Claire, and Veronica made the trip so fun and were so caring for all of the participants. Although they had so many responsibilities, they still had a ton of fun with us teens and made the experience even more memorable.

—Lauren Colella, Pennsylvania

"Best trip ever" according to Jessie. She loved all the kids and the entire staff this summer. The stories continue to spill out and she cannot get her face out of her computer and phone texting and emailing all of her 16 new friends—lots of giggling going on!

—Jennifer Niemann, Parent, Massachusetts

I only wish we would have discovered VISIONS sooner, I wish she had the opportunity to go again.

—Lori Colella, Parent, Pennsylvania

I loved everything about this trip, especially the nightly meetings! I really loved the cultural connection we had with the community, too!

—Julia Hickey, Marlborough, CT

Best month of my life. Most beautiful place I've ever been, very relaxing, best people I've ever met. Thank you VISIONS for giving me the opportunity to meet friends that will last me a lifetime.

—Jamie Lindner, Virginia

I loved every minute of it and if I could go back in time I would do it all over again. I got to experience a new culture, make new friends, and take a break from the stresses of home. Basically, I got everything I wanted from the program and more. (The site we stayed at was more amazing and beautiful than I could have ever imagined.)

—Andrew Mount, Pennsylvania

By the end of the trip I really felt like I lived and belonged in Capesterre. We had known everyone—from the kids who ran around in town, the older guys who played beach volleyball with us, the teenagers we gossiped with, to the lady who sold sorbet on our corner. Everyone in town was interested in us and welcomed us so kindly into their daily lives. I feel like I really had a good taste of the culture of Guadeloupe, from music, to food, to Creole lessons; we definitely were immersed into their community.

—Lena Mersereau, Connecticut

Exceeded our highest expectations for her.

—Heather Peck, Parent, Virginia

Excellent program offered at an appropriate level. There are numerous language immersion/community service programs available, however the majority of them appear to be extremely lavish, overindulgent programs. VISIONS was exactly what we were looking for: a grassroots, well organized program that provides the language immersion, community service, and living situation of a true third world country.

—Jeffrey Ziegelheim, Parent

The trip was amazing!!! It was one of the best times of my life and I am still in touch with a bunch of the friends I made. I feel like I made a difference in the community and also had so much fun!

—Melanie Simon, Illinois

This is a very efficient operation. It is meaningful, structured, and valuable. Thanks for taking the electronics away! I really felt that you had the kids' best interest at heart, always!

—Lynn and Dick Lawson, Parents, Wisconsin

VISIONS truly changed my life. I am more socially aware and more appreciative of the opportunities that I have. This will allow me to go back and make changes in my community and in other communities similar to the one I helped in Mississippi.

Antonia George, Wellesley, MA

In this world we only have each other, and so we should give and help when we can. I think VISIONS really awakened that quality in me—it showed me what a little bit of good can provide to the greater community.

—Ricardo Daniel Pagulayan, Arlington, VA

It was a 5. Everything was great, learning the new different cultures, being able to get along like family with the leaders & the other teens. The activities were all fun. Most of all giving back to the community was great. Thank you for everything VISIONS.

—Sanlly Romero, Massachusetts

The staff were so caring and considerate. I've never met a more energetic and compassionate group of people, and it was a privilege to see every staff member every day.

—Rachel Oshiro, Nevada

This was the best program I have ever participated in! Every person I met was amazing, from the camp counselors and fellow campers to the Blackfeet people. This trip has been life changing for me and was the best experience of my life so far. I'm so glad that I was able to take part.

—Canyon Campion, North Carolina

Your programs have made an impact on our two daughters—who went to separate programs and tried VISIONS for the first time this year. We will be back!

—Barbara Higgins, Parent, Illinois

The cross-cultural interaction was great. We hosted a dinner for some of our closest friends at the end of the program and they sang a 'safe travels' song in Cheyenne. It really spoke to all of our hearts

—Sarah Yamashita, New Jersey

My child had a wonderful experience with VISIONS. He gained valuable knowledge, experience and made new friends.

—Peter Chiu, Parent, New York

I went to Montana for a month. It was the greatest experience of my life and I loved it so much that I went back to the reservation this summer for a few days.

Lexi Litwak

We cannot thank you and everyone at VISIONS enough for providing Adam with a wonderfully life-changing experience.

—Lori Sandler, Pound Ridge, NY

Myanmar was so fun! Phaung Daw Oo School was the coolest school I've ever seen. Everyone within that community was so welcoming and friendly. Also, doing excursions with the Myanmar students was great!

—Andrew Goodrum, Florida

Last summer, a few participants chose to continue with more community service projects in Myanmar after their initial trip to Cambodia. More reviews to come after VISIONS first full summer program in Myanmar.

The whole experience was life changing. It's something I will take values from for the rest of my life. Plus, I learned so much Spanish and now am ahead in school.

—Mikaela Stelmach, Colorado

Both my teens loved the experience and said it was better than they had expected. They really loved the leaders. Neither had any complaints at all which I found surprising.

—Lisa Bayindirli, Parent, California

I was in awe. This experience shaped my being as a whole. I’m fortunate for this privileged experience.

—Deron Essex

I forged friendships with my group members, my leaders, and perhaps most importantly the community of Jinotega. I hope to follow up on these connections in the future and it’s all thanks to VISIONS. Thank you so much.

—Henry Solotaroff-Webber, Montclair, NJ

VISIONS is an awesome program. I met people there that have really changed my view on things and that I think will be friends for life. We have all already communicated about doing another VISIONS program together next year!

—Eve Sullivan, New York

Beyond anything we’d hoped for. She is a new kid. Confident, happy, interested and already planning her next summer! We just can’t thank you enough for a wonderful summer!

Izzy Povich, Parent

It was a good experience for both of my boys, and they are planning to go again next year.

Marion Lang, Parent, Amarillo, TX

The community service part of the trip was outstanding. Each day I felt really good about what I was doing.

—Charles Csaszar, New York

I had a really great time and I loved the balance beween service, outings, relaxing, culture, etc. I think my Spanish improved and I feel really good about the service we did. I also really enjoyed that we did so much with community members.

—Anna Kanengiser, New York

The program had a great balance of work and play. Work days were a perfect length and the work that we did at both the canals and the school was extremely rewarding.

—Madeline Flamm, Illinois

It appears to have been a true service experience — hard work that was filling a real need in the community (my daughter spent most of her time on the irrigation project). And she very much appreciated working side-by-side with members of the Urubamba community.

—Sarah Harding, Parent, Illinois

The Inca culture was present throught this program. It was amazing not only to practice my Spanish, but to learn about the Inca culture and learn Quechua.

—Erica Brenner, Hawaii