Dan has done work in more places than just Manitoba and northwestern Ontario. His first trip overseas was in 1992 to Jamaica, to lead a team of youth to build homes in a little travelled area on the north coast. Later on, after his kids were born, he travelled with Samaritan’s Purse, an internationally recognized relief organization to hurricane stricken Grenada in 2004, where his team built temporary shelters and replaced roof structures that were torn away. After 2 tours in Grenada, he fell in love with the place and the people and visited two more times with his family.
When a powerful earthquake his the coast of Peru in 2007, Dan had the opportunity to be part of a Samaritans Purse team to San Clemente, about 4 hours south of Lima. There they cleaned up rubble, tore down unsafe structures and built a small wooden church with no power tools! This part of Peru is one of the driest areas in the world, but very beautiful.
In 2009, Dan was part of a team going to the Bolivian altiplano. It was a project involving providing sustainable development for farmers in a large area that is mostly at about 14,000 feet above sea level. The team helped with the construction of livestock shelters, digging wells and installing proper latrines. Bolivia is a beautiful and fascinating country and a definite bucket list location!
But the true test of all this experience came when Dan found out he had 9 days to pack up for a month in Haiti after the devastating earthquake of January 2010 that killed over a quarter million people. It was a real emotional roller coaster ride while serving there, to see the resolve of the Haitian people but at the same time seeing the loss and hopelessness of the situation there. He arrived 6 weeks after the event and was able to help complete the temporary shelter assembly shop and train local workers to build the shelter parts and deliver them to the community where the first of many shelter towns would be built. Dan has kept in touch with one of the local workers since then and unfortunately, the situation there has not improved a lot.
His family also had an opportunity to live abroad in Quito, Ecuador for a whole year in 2010 and 2011, where Dan was able to work alongside Ecuadorians both in the city and in the jungles. More recently in 2019, he returned to Ecuador to work with his friend Don, on some projects Don is working on in the jungle areas south east of Quito.