San Antonio Girl Scouts Visit Non-Profit Groups in Dominican Republic | Texas Public Radio

San Antonio Girl Scouts Visit Non-Profit Groups in Dominican Republic

Jun 19, 2019

About two dozen local Girl Scouts and members of the non-profit group Summer of Service are headed to the Dominican Republic to observe and learn from nonprofit organizations working in the Caribbean country.

Ella Arispe sold 2,000 boxes of Girl Scout cookies to pay for her trip.

The group will shadow executive leaders of Dominican nonprofits as they manage and promote health care and human rights projects.

“We will learn...about them and see what they do for their communities and how they give back,” Ella said.

They will also have the opportunity to compare their daily lives with local youth group members and develop a greater understanding of their similarities and differences, according to a news release from the Girl Scouts.

Their schedule also includes a visit with an animal rights advocate.

But it’s not all work and no play. They will also take a river boat ride and enjoy a bonfire.

The group of girls, between the ages of 13 and 18, and six adults will be in the Dominican Republic for about a week. They will visit the cities of Sosua, Samana and Santo Domingo.

Organizers of the trip are aware that several Americans recently died from drinking beverages at Dominican resorts.

Ella’s mother, Evelyn Alejandro, said the team will get by on bottled water.

“We don’t have to worry about possible contamination from tap water and the same with ice. They are forgoing any ice in their drinks -- just as an extra, added measure of safety.”

The Girl Scouts directed the girls to drink only U.S. branded beverages in sealed containers and not consume food or beverages from street vendors.

They will also only consume food and beverages from pre-approved restaurants.

Currently, the U.S. Department of State has not issued related travel alerts for the Dominican Republic.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this story misspelled Ella Arispe's last name. Also, the money she raised from selling cookies paid for her trip to the Dominican Republic.

Brian Kirkpatrick can be reached at Brian@TPR.org and on Twitter at @TPRBrian.