Heather Kurtz

Heather is an actress, musician, and athlete. An assistant leader to a Daisy Girl Scouts Troop and recipient of the Girl Scout Gold Award, she spends her time whitewater kayaking, mountain climbing, playing piano, and practicing percussion, which she has performed in All County competitions and at solo festivals. Heather has also completed an Iron Girl Triathlon, proving her athletic versatility and drive.



One of the last things my mom told me before I left for Ecuador was to not come home with a man or a baby.  Well I half listened.  I do not have a man here. I have a daughter! Wait Before you all start panicking and getting plan tickets to Ecuador to punish me. …

23 March, 2012

Learner vs. Knower

During fall train in August we were told to be learners and to come into Ecuador as Learners not as Knowers. Well, I listened, but I did not understand what the difference was or how that would affect my experience in Ecuador. I recently took a trip with some friends and learned the difference, and…

06 March, 2012

Wow What a Girl!

When you were eleven what was your day like?  I went to school, played sports, came home and fought with my sibling. Here my aunt is eleven and her days are a little different.  She goes to school and does her homework, and on weekends plays soccer.  The difference is that she does not fight…

06 March, 2012

¿Una Profesora? Who, Me?

In early January, the Prefecto (governor) of Napo came up to me and asked when I was leaving Ecuador.  When I told him in April, he announced, “That’s great! So, now you are going to teach English”.  You do not tell the Prefecto no.  So I got a little worried about what I was going…

31 January, 2012

La Navidad

When you think of Christmas what do you think?  For me Christmas is: snow and sledding, time with my family, and presents for everyone.  One thing I love about Christmas are the decorations:  the green and the red, the Christmas tree and my Grandmother’s Christmas village.  I love to decorate the house and put up the tree; it is a lot…

25 January, 2012

Home Sweet Home

I am amazed by how much I feel at home here in Atacapi.   The week I spent in Quito was fun but I missed my family so much.  I was wondering how they were doing and wanted to know how the baby was because my parents said that the other children had spent months in…

13 December, 2011


Happy Thanksgiving. I am so thankful to be here in Ecuador. I am thankful for the life lessons I am learning. One of which is to be grateful for all that you have. I spent the weekend in Quito celebrating Thanksgiving with all the Ecuador fellows.  It was great.  In this time I learned that I have many things…

10 December, 2011

Oh Baby!

My baby sister On November 18th, my host mother here in Tena had a baby. She had a girl. It is very difficult to explain having a baby to people in Spanish. I received a call from my host mom at 3:20pm, on the 17th. She said that she was in labor.  She called me because she…

30 November, 2011


Throughout Fall Training at Stanford, Global Citizen Year asked us what we expected when we got to Ecuador.  Although I do not know what I expected when I got to Ecuador, I never thought I would be a well-known local celebrity.  I figured that I would be just another volunteer coming to change the world. As…

30 November, 2011

Un Rio

While in Atacapi, my community, I have discovered many things. There is one that really made me think. This was the river. I never knew all the things that a river can be.  Most of you know I have a passion for white-water kayaking. I am constantly watching the river levels to see when I…

19 October, 2011

Saying Goodbye

I’m going to miss the strawberries, because they are sweet and organic and cheap, and I will miss the carrots because one is almost enough to be a complete meal. I will miss getting on my bus on my way to Ambato and feeling the wave of relief that it actually showed up. Even though…

14 October, 2011


Everyone climbs mountains of some form.  Well, today the 30 of September we climbed mountain Pasochoa.  This was a great climb and learned many things.  I realized some of the mountains I have climbed here and some that I am still climbing.   Pasochoa was a beautiful mountain.  I loved climbing it and seeing all of…

03 October, 2011


One of the hardest things I have learned my first few weeks in Ecuador is to adapt. I never knew how valuable a quality that is. To be able to see something and to not react but instead to realize it is different and change yourself so that things work for the better. My week…

03 October, 2011

My Job

I am so exited.  I am on my way to Ecuador.  I will be learning Spanish and Quitwa.  I am going to live with a family and work on a farm.  This is going to be great, and I am so glad you are all here to share it with me.  These past weeks have…

02 September, 2011


Hello, I am Heather Kurtz, a 2012 Global Citizen Year Fellow.  When I was told to write about myself I said “Not again!” I am the salutatorian of my class and have had to write about myself many times already. But for you who read this I will do it one more time! I live…

06 July, 2011

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Heather Kurtz