2019 DR Mission Trip Planning Page

The location of the Dominican Episcopal camp and conference center in the village of El Pedregal (red marker), the site of our 2019 mission trip.

This page was last updated on March 21, 2019.

Now that our 2018 trip is completed, the following after-action documents are available: trip summary report | daily diary | comprehensive photo album | highlights photo album | Trip Planning Page

All information about our 2019 mission trip to the Dominican Republic will be placed on this planning page just as soon as it is avalilable. Contact information for the team leaders: Julia Ariail, (229) 563-0074, juliacariail@gmail.com; Julius Ariail, (229) 563-0209, julius.ariail@gmail.com.

If you would like to receive email messages with updates about the Dominican Republic mission program at Christ Church, please sign up here and check the “Dominican Republic Mission Trips” box. For an overview of this mission program, click here. For scanned copies of the thank-you notes received from the students in the K-8 Episcopal school in El Pedregal who received scholarship assistance from us for the 2017-2018 academic year, click here.

Team roster as of 8:30 p.m. on February 7, 2019 (firm commitment):

1. Julia Ariail, Valdosta GA
2. Julius Ariail, Valdosta GA
3. Bonnie Hanson, Valdosta GA
4. Caroline Hiers, Thomasville GA
5. Meg Hiers, Marietta GA
6. Phyllis Hiers, Valdosta GA
7. Steph Johnson, Valdosta GA
8. Bella Pozo, Thomasville GA
9. Mary Jeannette Pringle, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
10. Fred Richter, Statesboro GA
11. Paul Stevenson, Valdosta GA
12. Emily Taylor, Valdosta GA
13. Casey Wesselman, Myrtle Beach SC
14. William Whatley, Statesboro GA

The team is limited to 18 missioners because of the size of the in-country chartered minibus transportation we will be using. The team roster will be set after January 31.

After considering all of the preferences expressed for the 2019 mission trip schedule, we have decided that the trip will be from Monday, June 17, to Monday, June 24. We know that this was not everyone’s choice, and we appreciate all of the input that led to this decision. These dates were also those requested by Padre Canela at the Campamento. On October 11, those dates were approved by the DR diocesan office.

The decision on flights for the 2019 trip has been made. All missioners will have the choice of starting the trip either at the Valdosta airport or at the Atlanta airport on Monday, June 17. All will fly back to Atlanta on June 24, where missioners can decide on their own to leave the trip in Atlanta or to fly on to Valdosta that same night.

Here are the designated flight numbers and times:

Monday, June 17
Delta 3818 VLD 6:10 a.m. –> ATL 7:25 a.m.
Delta 686 ATL 9:50 a.m. –> SDQ 1:16 p.m.

Monday, June 24
Delta 759 SDQ 2:20 p.m. –> ATL 5:56 p.m.
Delta 3968 ATL 9:16 p.m. –> VLD 10:20 p.m.

As of 10 a.m. on January 10, the cost of these flights from and back to Valdosta was $1,474.23. The cost of the flights from and back to Atlanta was $943.13.

We will not be purchasing a group ticket for this trip.

We are happy to report that we had a good meeting on October 24 and again on February 6 with Padre Ramón Canela and his wife, Ivelisse Espinal, at the Campamento in El Pedregal, and that these projects have been approved for our 2019 mission trip:

* Paint murals of animals and trees in the second kindergarten classroom. (We did the first classroom last year).

* Construct a concrete block bedroom for a villager, Pirlulu, replacing an existing plywood structure on the side of a house. Pirlulu is Leidy’s cousin and Elena’s grandson, and our team has supported his education in a special needs school for many years.

* Install oscillating wall fans in the second-floor main dormitory rooms. These will be installed by the time we arrive.

* Conduct sewing classes for a group of the village women and teenagers.

* Form a group of local teenagers and our missioner teenagers, and facilitate projects for them — bracelet making, sewing classes, a service project at the campamento or in the village, and a day trip to Rancho Baiguate, a nearby eco-tourism facility.

* Conduct a veterinary clinic for a local animal rescue program. For a short video about this project, click here.

* Sponsor the splash party for the village children.

During the time we will be at the Campamento, the teachers will still be on post-planning duty but the children will be out of classes. The teachers will be available to help us with the VBS and other activities as needed.

[PLEASE NOTE: THE TEAM ROSTER HAS BEEN SET, AND ENROLLMENT IS NOW CLOSED.] If you are interested in joining the 2019 team, please contact us to discuss your interest and your possible role on the team. Once you receive an OK to join from us, then send a $100 deposit made payable to Christ Episcopal Church with “DR Mission” in the memo line to the church (see address below). Then proceed to choose your departure city and purchase your flight tickets. Send copy of the airline confirmation to juliacariail@gmail.com . The team will have a maximum of 18 members. An additional trip fee of approximately $650 will be due sometime in the spring of 2019. This money will pay for our room and board while at the Campamento, the costs of in-country transportation, supplies for our projects, and an overnight hotel stay in Santo Domingo on June 23.

All missioners will have the choice of starting the trip either at the Valdosta airport or at the Atlanta airport on Monday, June 17. All will fly back to Atlanta on June 24, where missioners can decide on their own to leave the trip in Atlanta or to fly on to Valdosta that same night.

Email messages about the 2019 trip:
March 21, 2019: Teen project(s)
March 14, 2019: Sewing project
March 7, 2019: Dog rescue project, flight times changed again
February 28, 2019: Painting project, Dog rescue video
February 21, 2019: Valdosta Flight Times Changed, Veterinary Project
February 14, 2019: Bedroom construction
February 7, 2019: On-Site Planning
January 31, 2019: Fourteen missioners
January 24, 2019: Poster with the 2018 team
January 17, 2019: 16 missioners
January 10, 2019: 16 missioners
January 3, 2019: 16 missioners + 2 in discernment
December 27, 2018: Christmas Greeting
December 20, 2018: Successul fundraiser
December 13, 2018: Scholarship thank-you notes are in!
December 6, 2018: Fundraisers – silver crosses and books
November 29, 2018: Silver and Larimar crosses as fundraisers
November 21, 2018: Team slots are filling up
November 15, 2018: Time to join the team
November 7, 2018: J&J away
November 1, 2018: List of projects and how to join the team
October 18, 2018: Decisions on flights
October 11, 2018: No flight decisions yet
October 4, 2018: June 17-24, 2018
September 27, 2918: Two date options
September 19, 2018: Planning meeting on September 23, 2018