International Youth Meet Their American Peers Though Skype

Editor’s Note: News story shows the perspective of a high school skyping their international peers. Continue to read the article to gain the perspective of the international students skyping their American peers and sponsor schools. This experience is very rewarding for all involved!

This post was written by Gricelda Argueta (featured in video and standing in picture below). She is a former Yuda Bands sponsored student and now one of two Yuda Bands Director in San Martin Guatemala.


Some of our students here in Guatemala ask, “Skype? What is that?” Their parents ask with even more curiosity since they no nothing about computers. 

When the Skype call first begins, the students are sometime embarrassed or a little shy. It’s their first time using Skype, so sometimes they turn to me and say, “What do I say?” I love to see their innocence when they ask me that. I encourage them to ask something they would like to know about the kids who are working so hard selling bracelets to pay for their scholarship. The youth in the US are also very happy to ask them questions!

One time, a mother accompanied her daughter for the Skype call, wanting to experience the call and share the moment with her daughter. I remember that this mother was so excited and she asked all the questions! The daughter was very quiet and shy, ha ha! Finally the mother said to her daughter, “Ask them how old they are.” When the mother heard the ages, she was shocked to find out that they were the same age or younger than her daughter! She said, “These youth are so young and they’re helping other youth. This is marvelous! It makes me so happy to talk to them and above all to thank them, although I can’t say it in English because I don’t know how.” 

There are lots of youth that have had the opportunity to talk through Skype, but the student who was the most excited and happy, and wouldn’t stop talking, was Lorenzo Guicoy. Together with his mother, this boy was so excited to thank everyone that he was talking really, really fast! I told him to slow down and speak slowly because they were trying to understand him in Spanish so it’s better to talk slowly, ha ha! I loved seeing how enthusiastically he was talking. 

Being in charge of the Skype calls has made me realize how much the youth really love to get to know youth from other countries. They’re so proud to have this great adventure! I’ve even noticed in the faces of the US youth, how happy they are to get to know OUR youth. With a big smile they always say things like “Really, we are so happy to help these dedicated youth. It’s a great pleasure.” I really love each of these experiences to feel the joy that we all have to get to know each other. It also helps me so much to practice my English! It’s so nice!  

I would love to write more, but I really just want to say, “THANK YOU YUDA BANDS FOR THIS UNFORGETTABLE EXPERIENCE!”