Students on an ASB Trip to Guatemala

Alternative Service Break: Guatemala

Every year, the Women’s Center teams up with Leadership and Civic Engagement to host an Alternative Service Break trip to Guatemala focusing on gender issues. Participants on this trip explore:
  • traditional understandings of masculinity, femininity, and non-binary gendered identities,
  • historical and contemporary manifestations of gender-based violence in Guatemala, and
  • how gender influences the daily lives of Guatemalans, often evidenced most clearly through structured systems which perpetuate situations of poverty and restrictive definitions of how people experience life.
These issues are closely examined within the Guatemalan context, but participants also consider the manner in which these same themes manifest themselves in the US, as well as the role the US has played in the Guatemalan civil war and in the more recent US border crisis. Significant emphasis is placed on the learning aspect of educating ourselves in the historical, cultural, and political dynamics of gender issues and bringing that new-found knowledge back to share with others to help elicit change.