Our Team

Scott Garrison

Founder and Director

I started Buena Onda to be the bridge between international volunteers and local grassroots organizations. I felt that these organizations were working tirelessly towards a more equitable future for Guatemalans. It seemed that matching volunteers with their unique skills, education, and passions with local communities that were seeking support would be a helpful contribution to community development. We have learned a lot ourselves since the beginning and we have evolved. Still, the original intent remains true - bringing good people together to do good work.

From the first day that I arrived in Guatemala, I somehow knew that I was home. Having spent more than half my life moving between new cities, countries, and continents, I felt something totally different, an immediate comfort, as I looked out on a beautiful, blue sky day in 2011. In that first moment, I was already reconsidering my original plan to leave Guatemala after three months. I was home and I wanted to stay.

Now a permanent resident, Guatemala is truly my home. It is a complicated, welcoming, sometimes frustrating but always resilient country that is also full of creative opportunity. Over the years, I have lived my Master’s thesis, carving out experiential learning environments. As a teacher by profession, I worked with teens in local high schools, developing unique projects highlighting communication, teamwork, and the real-world application of classroom instruction.

With each project, I learned more about building strong bonds of trust and accountability with local community leaders. These experiences formed the foundation of Buena Onda. We foster these relationships as we expand our reach to volunteers across the globe. What started as a small pet project has grown into a proactive, professional team that remains personal in our service and responsive to the goals of our local communities.

Likewise, I have been thrilled to meet more Guatemalan collaborators and learn about different communities across the country. The combination of education, in-country experience, and local knowledge has produced many opportunities to bring good people together to good work, all in the devoted interest of a more equitable future for all Guatemalans.

I started Buena Onda to be the bridge between international volunteers and local grassroots organizations. I felt that these organizations were working tirelessly towards a more equitable future for Guatemalans. It seemed that matching volunteers with their unique skills, education, and passions with local communities that were seeking support would be a helpful contribution to community development. We have learned a lot ourselves since the beginning and we have evolved. Still, the original intent remains true - bringing good people together to do good work.

Eduardo Luis Vasquez

In-Country Coordinator and Mentor

My name is Eduardo Luis. I was born in Antigua Guatemala and I have lived here all my life, with my family and closely connected to my Guatemalan roots. Even when I was little, I had the  dream to be a teacher. In fact, my brother, cousins, and I used to pretend that we had a school when we were kids, where I would teach them what I learned at school that week,

Finally, I did start to work when I was 18 years old, teaching Spanish at a local school. Since then, I have been teaching my language and sharing my culture with people from many different countries. This has definitely left its mark on my life, when I see my students making progress in their learning. When it is time for them to leave, I feel proud that a little piece of Guatemala is with them in their hearts. I am excited to meet you and introduce you to my country and culture!

Read more

Andrea Quiñonez de Azurdia

In-Country Coordinator and Mentor

My name is Andrea and I live in Antigua Guatemala with my husband and two sons. Having graduated from school as a Bilingual Secretary and Management Assistant, I then completed a Bachelor of Arts degree in Linguistics at the University of San Carlos in Guatemala. I am now a certified translator and proofreader, I am happy and excited to apply my skills to Buena Onda’s progress.

I like to meet new people all the time and I am a team player. I also like to help others in every possible way. I truly believe helping others is another way to acquire knowledge while sharing my own. I tell my kids that one should never stop learning from the people around them, and that education has the greatest power to bring positive change in the world.

Getting involved in Buena Onda has benefits that can last a lifetime. We do our best to help communities around Guatemala, and we also grow with the challenges ahead of us. It is also education from experience, as learn we new skills, gain knowledge, and build understanding.

Read more

Debora de la Cruz

Marketing Coordinator

since the beginning of my professional career I was interested in a social welfare perspective, I then directed my creative and strategic skills to the third sector, exploring the world of communications with cause I decided to specialize in fundraising.

This particular adventure led me to travel and get out of my comfort zone. I volunteered for Worldpackers for the last two years in Europe, discovering new cultural corners mostly in Spain.

I often try to include travel as a lifestyle that gives me life perspectives and makes me grow year after year. In my free time I enjoy an intense exercise routine, reading and meditation also make me very happy, and of course, good friends and a good coffee from Guatemalan lands could not be missing on a good day.

Read more