TGL NicaraguaAPPLY NOW FOR TGL NICARAGUA
Volcanoes, lagoons, cobblestone streets, vibrant colors, amazing kids. Nicaragua is one heck of a wild ride from start to finish. It’s also our most affordable trip, AND one of our most meaningful trips. By that we mean that you will work hand-in-hand with some amazing young photographers all week long, learning their stories and helping them reach for their dreams. This will be our 5th team to Nicaragua, and if there’s one thing we can promise, it’s that there won’t be a dry eye in the house on the final day. Yup, these kids are that amazing.
Our partner NGO is Empowerment International. EI’s end goal is to break the poverty cycle by getting children into school, and inspiring them to stay in school. They do this with home visits to educate the whole family on the benefits of school, through their tutoring centre (where older students tutor the younger students), and through after school programs, such as their incredibly successful photography club!
This club is now six years into operation and while they’re always taking on new students as novice photographers, their older and long-term students are becoming masters of photography! Thanks to our partners, Smugmug, EI now has an in-house gallery open to the public – and online! – where purchases of student prints help fund the program.
Trip Experience Breakdown:
- Photographic Opportunities for Landscapes: Amazing
- Photographic Opportunities for Portraits: Excellent
- Other Photographic Opportunities: Night, Market, Street, City
- NGO work: Deeply impactful, rewarding
- Accommodation: Shared, Good
- Transportation: Private, Good
- Food: Provided by EI staff – delicious!
- Physical Effort Required: Medium: Some hiking, climbing stairs, rocks and ruins
- Challenges in Country: Minimal: poverty, poor internet, travel time, modest dress
- Safety in Country: Very Good
- Overall Grade for this trip: Highly impactful, Affordable, and Fun
What’s it like being on a Team?
In a word: Life-Changing. Immersing yourself into a team of photographers is always a wonderful way to accelerate your creativity and feel supported by other artists. Immersing yourself in another culture does wonders to open your eyes, and your heart, and allows you many avenues to find your vision and experience the world. Immersing yourself in the act of giving back, giving yourself and your
time, giving your heart and your energy, always returns back to you a thousand times more than what you gave, affecting you at the very core of who you are. Doing ALL THREE will literally change your life. You will grow, expand, renew, open up, move on, let go, gain more, give more, and see the world, differently.
We welcome all levels of experience with photography, as well as travel. Our leaders will ensure you are prepared for the experience and walk alongside you through it all. Workshops and photo-walks are open-ended, with leaders ready to assist with any questions you may have, for any level of skill. As well, there will be two nights of photo-critiquing for those who want it. We also believe in turning our volunteers from Tourists Into Travellers, meaning we will also educate you on proper travel photography ethics, practices, do’s and don’ts, tactics, expectations, cultural sensitivity, social justice and human right issues, and much much more. You’ll see the world in a whole new way, on so many levels!
What’s Included in the Fee:
- all accommodation starting on the arrival day
- all meals, as well as bottles of water
- all ground transportation to and from various cities and project sites
- any extra events, such as museum visits, special dinners, etc
- a substantial donation to the NGO to further their work
- entry fees to sites
NOT Included: Flights to and from country, travel insurance, entry and exit fees, visas, beverages beyond water, alcoholic beverages, souvenirs, extra donations.
About the Leaders:
Michael Bonocore is a landscape and portrait photographer living and working in San Francisco, California, and is Travel Editor for Resource Magazine. His photography goals evolved to include travel and humanitarian photography, as he began collaborating with The Giving Lens, coming along on our trips to document the teams in action and capture behind-the-scenes moments. With many trips under his belt, Michael is now our Senior Trip Leader!
Brian Matiash is a professional photographer and published author based in Portland, OR. He specializes in landscape & travel photography and has spent the better part of a decade educating and inspiring photographers all around the world with his tutorials, videos, and stories. He’s openly addicted to long exposures, ND filters, and fish eye lenses. Brian is a wonderful teacher and TGL is excited to have him with us!