Chinchiná, Colombia – Sport Without Borders

The goal of this program is to use sport as a vehicle for teamwork, wellness education, and personal growth. You will work with ISL partners to help children and youth hone their athletic skills while giving you an opportunity to experience another culture, and make global connections through one of the world’s most recognized languages - sport. ‘Futbol’ is king in Colombia, however, we encourage you to introduce your favourite sports, and share your passion with the community.

You will have the opportunity to visit with Colombian coaches and physical fitness experts. In the evenings, ISL will provide information sessions on health and nutrition, body mechanics, self care, team values, and competitive performance skills.  You will conclude your week with a visit to Granja Pinares, where you will get to explore a sustainable coffee plantation.

UN Sustainable Development Goal 3 - Good Health and Well-beingUN Sustainable Development Goal 10 - Reduced InequalitiesUN Sustainable Development Goal 11 - Sustainable cities and communities

Community Partners

International Service Learning

Dates of Travel

Monday May 4, 2020 - Monday May 18, 2020

Participant Numbers

  • 9 Student Participants
  • 1 Student Team Leader
  • 2 Team Leaders


  • Explore the concept of sport as a social construct in Colombia, and compare this to how sport is understood and practiced in your home country
  • Interact with local Colombian athletes, while promoting healthy living practices
  • Explore a sustainable coffee plantation

Learning Outcomes

At the end of your Impact Experience you will be able to:

  • Demonstrate the ability to explore ideas, issues, and global systems from viewpoints other than your own, through reflective practice, group discussions and program activities
  • Work under conditions of ambiguity or uncertainty by engaging with community partners, community members and working as a team
  • Demonstrate an understanding of intercultural competence, sensitivity and humility by completing pre-departure workshops, activities in OWL and the ASB Reflective Practice Workbook, and engaging in the 1-2 week community-based experience
  • Identify and describe how participation in sport can contribute to a community's understanding and practice of health
  • Define the impact of various measures of wellbeing within the community
  • Recognize the limitations of your own knowledge and abilities

Ideal Participant

Your team will be exposed to a true local Colombian experience. The ideal participant loves learning about new cultures, and has a well-rounded perception of healthy activities and a healthy lifestyle. Ideal participants are flexible, reliable, and committed to learning. During this experience, you will be challenged to lean into your discomfort, and to go with the flow.


Total cost (subject to change) – $4,200 CAD

Costs include:

  • Flight
  • Registration and programs fees with International Service Learning
  • Contribution to the project and comprehensive on-site support
  • Insurance (health, flight cancellation, baggage)
  • Transportation to/from airport
  • Transportation in Colombia
  • Accommodation
  • Meals
  • Administrative Fee (team leader contribution, journal, buff)


  • Impact Experience participants will be responsible for any luggage costs assigned by individual airlines, airport tax, souvenirs, or additional food/snacks during the trip.
  • Impact Experience participants holding Canadian Passports, Colombia charges a reciprocity fee to citizens of Canada arriving at an airport in Colombia. The fee is approximately $90 CAD (or 160,000 Colombian pesos) per person and is valid for a single entry into the country. This fee will be the responsibility of participants and can be paid via an international credit card or debit card.

Preliminary Itinerary

Day 1-3 (Orientation): After a long flight to Bogota, you will arrive in Chinchina and have some time to settle in to Hotel Chinchiná Plaza, explore downtown and enjoy a welcome dinner. The morning of your second day will be all about coffee, with a tour where you will learn about the cultivation, harvesting, processing and preparation of your morning cup of joe.  The afternoon will be spent focusing on professional orientation by the Coach and Physical Fitness Expect, and your evening will conclude with a Spanish and Latin dance class. You will take a breath-taking hike around the coffee region.

Day 4-8 (Team Formation, Physical Education and Club Sports): Your days will be spent visiting with local schools, promoting physical education and leading physical activities. In the afternoon, you will alternate between working on a Youth Sports Mural at the local stadium and conducting fitness classes at the senior community centre and at the childcare centre for children of sex workers.  In the evenings, you will participate in a multitude of club sports including speed skating, soccer and basketball at the local stadium, turf field and coliseum.

Day 9-10 (Weekend City Tours, Bird Watching and Dog Walking): You will have an opportunity to explore the Manizales City and after dinner relax at the Manizales Hot Springs. The following day will be spent bird watching and dog walking followed by a bbq and pool party at the U.S. Veterans House.  

Day 11-13 (Physical Education): Back to the schools, where you will spend your mornings leading physical activities and afternoons will be divided between fitness foundation classes for children with disabilities and finishing the Youth Sports Mural at the local stadium.   

Day 14 (Goodbyes): You will say goodbye to your new friends and depart for home with lots of stories to share.

PLEASE NOTE: Itinerary is draft, and subject to change at any point in time.


You will call Hotel Chinchiná Plaza home for your 8-day experience, and this is located in downtown Chinchiná, next to Parque Bolivar and the Cathedral.


Meals are prepared at approved local restaurants, and reflect a variety of local foods. Students with specific dietary restrictions may wish to bring supplementary snacks.

Need to Know

  • This experience does not involve travel through the USA.
  • You are responsible for ensuring that you have the required travel documents and travel visas necessary to participate in the experience.
  • If you require disability-related accommodation, or have other special considerations, we encourage you to contact us before applying. We may require further information to determine how we can best meet your accommodation needs.