Students coordinate delegation to promote leadership after inspiring trip to Honduras

 Caitlyn Marks (left), Bertha Zúniga Cáceres (middle), and Tasha Tart (Right) take photo on mission trip to Honduras. Photo courtesy of Caiti Marks. 

Caitlyn Marks (left), Bertha Zúniga Cáceres (middle), and Tasha Tart (Right) take photo on mission trip to Honduras. Photo courtesy of Caiti Marks. 

After seniors Caiti Marks and Tasha Tart traveled to Honduras this past summer with an organization called Witness for Peace, they became inspired to coordinate their own delegation focused on youth leadership in social justice in Honduras.

Marks and Tart said that when they traveled to Honduras, their focus was on nonviolent resistance, and after meeting with various groups in Honduras, they gained a perspective on the number of young leaders that were involved in making a difference in Honduras. This is what inspired them to create their own delegation.

“We made the decision to go back to Honduras but this time it will be with a different focus,” Marks said.

Tart and Marks soon went from delegates to coordinators of their own mission under the Witness for Peace program.

According to witnessforpeace.org, “Witness for Peace is a politically independent, nationwide grassroots organization of people committed to nonviolence and led by faith and conscience.”

The mission will be taking place this May.

“We will be meeting with young prominent leaders in Honduras, learning about their movements and their involvement, and hoping shining a light on how valuable we are in changing the world,” Marks said.

Tart said that by showing students how valuable they can be in making a difference and taking a stand in Honduras that it will translate and carry over to students becoming more involved on campus and elsewhere.

“The students that were willing to put their lives at risk fighting for what they believe in was profound in Honduras,” Tart said. “Caiti and I realized that we as students are what leads change. It truly is up to us.”

According to Marks, one of the organizations they plan on meeting with is a university group in Honduras that have organized a resistance against a violation of student rights. These are the kind of movements Marks and Tart are hoping will inspire the students.

"I hope the students that travel with us will take back lessons on activism that they can apply to their own lives, among many other life lessons I know they will learn,” Tart said.

Marks said that they do not only want students to come on the trip, but they would love to see a wide age range because they want as many people as possible to see the value of encouraging young people to take a stand and become leaders.

“We want to recruit students on this delegation to encourage our young peers to get involved in social justice and social movements,” Marks said.

The mission will take place on May 25 through June 3. If interested in joining their delegation to help empower young leaders, email coordinators Caiti Marks at marks081@d.umn.edu or Tasha Tart at tartx010@d.umn.edu.

 

 

CultureCassidy Johnson