some answers to commonly asked questions

Helpful Information


We will hand out a very detailed packet of medical advice once we start participant meetings. 

Here are some highlighted points:

  • No specific vaccinations are required for entry into El Salvador
  • While we are there, we assume that ALL water is unsafe to drink with 2 exceptions: We drink any water that is bottled, and we drink the water from the wells we’ve built. It is 100% safe to drink, and is tested for all unhealthy bacteria and none has been found. This has been the main water source of our trips for over the past five years.
  • Mosquitoes, dengue, and malaria: In February the risk for dengue and malaria are very low. However, to best protect yourself, use insect repellent with DEET


We will be traveling to Monte Cristo, El Salvador, which is roughly one hour from the capitol, San Salvador, but is very different. While San Salvador is a flourishing city, Monte Cristo is rural island. It is a community with dirt roads and dirt floors in their homes.

While you may think that El Salvador is not a safe country, we can assure you that Rancho Grande is safe. We wanted to be sure of this, so during our first scouting trip (a weekend in May 2006) we took along the mother of a ninth grade student at the time. Her verdict might have changed our mind if she said the community seemed too unsafe, but she said that it was so safe she would have no problem sending her own daughter. 

While in the community we have never experienced any signs or gestures of violence. We fly into and out of the San Salvador airport. We will see guards with guns there, but it is for security. We have never had a problem, and don’t expect to.


We are asking that the participants make a goal to raise $1,500 for the trip. Here is an estimated breakdown:

  • Transportation to and from (plane): $750
  • In country costs (food, transportation and lodging): $200
  • Projects: $550

We ask that you make an effort to fundraise the money, to experience a community of support as you prepare for the trip. There will be ways for you to raise money individually and as a group.   We ask everyone to raise as much as they can. If cost is an issue, please talk to one of us. We do not want to exclude anyone!


We will be contacting everyone via email, phone and text.  You can contact me anytime using the information below

Michael Saltarelli