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REPORTING · 4th September 2014
Walter McFarlane
Kitimat City Council received a presentation by several Mount Elizabeth Secondary School students who took a trip to Costa Rica earlier this year. Teacher John Sorenson, Katelin Enmark and Deanna Klonarakis presented to Council.

“This past year, we were given a grant for $1850 for our school to go to Costa Rica. I want to take this opportunity to thank Council and share some of the things which we saw there,” said Sorenson.

The students put on a slideshow about their trip to Costa Rica. They a visited biological park where they learned about the biomes and animals of Costa Rica, they visited a school in Costa Rica, visited a volcano, went Kayaking and white water rafting.

The Kitimat students donated $300 to one of the schools there which is an entire years budget. Their trip to the Volcano was ended because it was very active on the day they were there.

On their last night, they went to a cultural night in San Jose. They saw a lot of different dances that night. Another cultural difference was the food. For breakfast, they had plantains, rice potato and bread. They also had the opportunity to see how coffee is made.

Councillor Rob Goffinet wanted to know, was the food hot. Sorenson told him they toned down the spice for the North American crowd. Their tour guide would normally order something else at the places they were staying and he would inform the students if they wanted something different, spicier food was available.

They thanked Council for their generosity. Mayor Joanne Monaghan told her the pictures made her homesick.

Goffinet asked how many students went and what grades they were from. Sorenson replied that 22 students went from grades 11 and 12.

Councillor Edwin Empinado asked if they want future Council’s to support this program. The response was they used the money for donations to help the country.

Goffinet asked if they were planning another trip. Sorenson replied he’s planning an educational trip to Belize in 2016. He would like to go their again. Some students are thinking of going to Costa Rica to volunteer in the schools.

“If that makes an impact on kids, that’s great. A trip like this can make you think outside your own little world or bubble, what can I do as an individual on a global scale,” said Sorenson.

“I think it’s great for school children to do that, because they’ll never be the same after they have a trip like that,” said Monaghan.