Dream Travel Gives Back

Let's Pay it Forward

Bringing Christmas to an orphanage.

Dream Travel has been giving back since we first opened our doors in 2004. From feeding and clothing the homeless in Edmonton, to bringing Christmas to indigenous orphans in the remote mountains of Costa Rica, to donating shoes and clothing to both children and adults in a village of Tanzania, to feeding many poverty-stricken families during the pandemic, to sponsoring hundreds of children with race entries and to buying computers for a youth center in Vancouver for at-risk young people, we try and spread as much love and assistance as possible. We are grateful and fortunate to be able to continue to lend a helping hand to people both locally in Canada and around the world!

We’re extremely proud to have donated to all of the people and groups on this page and a whole lot more!

How to Help

If you wish to help any of the individuals below, the group of orphaned children, the schools  or the families below, simply click on the button below each person or group of people. The links will either take you directly to their own charity, or to a page where you can input the person’s or groups name in the Invoice field, then the amount. 100% of any money that comes through Dream Travel  goes directly to the charity and we will prove it with receipts! We have no fees and will never take any portion of your donation.
*Please note, we are not an official charity (yet!), just trying to do the right thing.


Way back in 2004, the first group I ever escorted was to the enchanted country of Tanzania.  The breathtaking views of Kilimanjaro, the stunning Serengeti, the incredible Ngorongoro Crater all make this trip amazing. However, it’s not hard to see that there’s a lot of poverty there as well and a lot of children that could use a helping hand!

I was in no shape to financially help back then, but I vowed to make a difference one day.  In February of 2024, exactly 20 years after I escorted our first group, I had a completely random and chance meeting with the founder and a volunteer from ABCDreams Canada, a charity that sought to help the children of Moshi, Tanzania.  They told me that a simple donation of CAD$10 would feed one child lunch for an entire year!  A donation of CAD$15 would supply a girl with a sanitary napkin kit which would allow her to not miss school once a month!  I knew this was my chance, and so Dream Travel is very pleased to have donated meals for an entire school of 370 children for an entire year!


If you would like to donate directly to this charity, please use the link below.

Asante sana!


The first ten or so years of running Dream Travel, I focused on helping my fellow Canadians, both locally in Edmonton and also in Vancouver. After that I branched out to help people in other countries. I still help in Canada and always will, but going forward I’m going to also focus on a different country each year.

To those that know me, Costa Rica is very dear to my heart as it took me in when I was financially forced out of my home in 2008 in order to save my business.

I lost my office, my home, and then sold all my possessions and headed to Costa Rica to drastically lower my living expenses. I was just over $100,000 in debt but had $2000 that my grandmother had left me when she passed. Using that little money, I continued to operate my business, survived six months and created some financial breathing room.  Without the money from my grandmothers estate, I wouldn’t be here today, running my business. I’ll never forget that help that she gave me and where it has taken me. Because of that, I’ll always pay it forward.

Staying in paradise allowed me to pay off my debt and save my business in record time. Since then, I’ve done my best to personally give back in Costa Rica and will also continue to do so in the future.

Now that I’m really focusing on helping others, more so than before, I figured that there’s no better place to find four amazing individuals to focus on for the next year.

Ivan, Francela, Claudia and Mario

These four exceptional individuals featured below, along with their stories, photos and videos, show just how amazing each of them are! They have all broken down barriers and hurdles in almost unimaginable ways but could really use a hand. Their stories are from difficult to absolutely heartbreaking, yet if you met any one of them, you’d never know their struggles as they don’t let their situation or their hurdles limit or define them!

Dream Travel is committing a portion of all sales in 2022 to these individuals below to help them achieve their dreams! Their dreams range from owing a handcycle, to running the New York City Marathon, to opening their own humble business and to getting an education. The people below have inspired us so much that we had to dedicate a page to them. If you wish to personally help out anyone from below, please read on.


Ivan went to the hospital in 2006 with a stomach ache that turned out to be a tumor. Fortunately the tumor was removed but he developed an infection that ultimately led to him losing a leg. He spent the next 8 and a half years in a deep depression, never leaving his house and most days not leaving his bed.

In 2017 he had a major shift and he realized that he was lucky to be alive and that he could still live his life, possibly even fuller without the lost limb. He started to run and quickly crushed his depression.

In just 4 short years, Ivan has run 5 races of 5K, 66 races of 10K, 2 races of 11K, 1 race of 12K, 4 races of 15K and 9 Half Marathons! That’s a total of 87 races in 4 years!

His fastest 5K was 36:30, his fastest 10K was 1 hour and six minutes, and his fastest Half Marathon was 2 hours, 45 minutes…all on crutches!

Ivan is a local hero in Costa Rica, being interviewed almost as many times as he’s run races around the country and is now making international news!

Ivan’s biggest dream is to travel to the Big Apple to run the New York City Marathon! If you want to help Ivan get to NY and line up on Race Day, let us know!


Hi, my name is Ivan Rodriguez Segura, I have been running for 4 years and I have a big dream. My big dream is to go and run the marathon in New York and I would like to make my dream come true. Thank you for your help!

100% of donations go to the person you choose. Dream Travel pays the bank fees on all transactions.


Claudia has had a life of straight out of a movie. Unfortunately, however, not the kind of movie anyone would want to be in. Claudia grew up with a much younger brother and sister and a single mother in a very poor part of Costa Rica. Their humble home, barely held together by pieces of wood and metal, was and is full of laughter and smiling. I’ve honestly never met a happier bunch, despite what they’ve gone through!

Claudia had her first accident in 2003 when she was just 15 years old. She was waved across the street by a man in a car. As she crossed in front, his foot slipped off the brake and onto the gas, hitting her. Not only did Claudia break her ankle, but she ended up with severe nerve damage in her spine to the point that she couldn’t return to school. Instead, she finished high school remotely from home. Even today, 19 years later, she still can’t walk or even sit without substantial pain.

At the same time, her mother and only parent was dealing with cancer and had been for 10 years. Unfortunately, she lost that battle just two years later. Claudia, at the age of 18 and barely over her first accident, became solely in charge of taking care of two younger siblings, putting food on the table, paying the rent, putting them through school, clothing them…everything!

Her second accident, also involving a vehicle hitting her, was in 2010 and it broke her hip and femur and she was bedridden for 3 years, unable to even sit up as she had to wait for a hip replacement. Yet, she still had to support and care for her much younger brother and sister.

To make ends meet, Claudia started her own knitting business called Creaciones Claudy (Creations by Claudy) but struggles to stay seated long enough to get much done. Her dream is to have a work chair with lumbar support.


Hello! My name is Claudia. I live in Perez Zeledon, San Jose, Costa Rica. My big dream is to have my own knitting company. I need a chair with lumbar support, a desk and knitting materials. Thank you very much for your help!
To visit her Facebook page with her work, please click here

100% of donations go to the person you choose. Dream Travel pays the bank fees on all transactions.


Everyone knows that one person that’s always a breath of fresh air, a positive note on the darkest of days. For me, that person is Francela. Perhaps if you were to first meet her, she’d tried to come off as serious. But within a minute or two, you both would be laughing and smiling – she just brings it out in everyone. She’s an incredible beacon of light and I’m extremely grateful for knowing her!

Francela was born without arms but is the last person to use the word ‘disabled’. In fact, Francela is anything but! She’s faster typing a message on her phone with her feet and toes than I am on my best day with my hands and fingers. She can change a diaper, bathe her baby or do virtually anything else just as anyone born with all four limbs. She told me that growing up, all she wanted to be viewed as was normal. She didn’t want any special attention or treatment, she wanted to be just another person. I can tell you this much, though: she’s anything but just another person! Francela is a superhero, a super mom and a super person in general! Far from normal, simply based on her attitude towards life!

You’d never know it from pictures or her video, but Francela also suffers from MS and has substantial curvature of the spine. Just walking becomes difficult after a short while and most exercise is out of the question. That said, her favorite exercise is swimming and assures me she’s very quick in the river! Her humble dream is to have a private room for her child and her as well as some money for education.

Hello, my name is Francela Mena Mena and my dream is to have a private room for myself and my baby, and as well to have some savings for an education in the future. Thank you very much!

100% of donations go to the person you choose. Dream Travel pays the bank fees on all transactions.

Mario Hidalgo Chaves

Mario was just two years old when he became severely ill with polio.  Having no use of his legs, Mario decided to start competing in wheelchair racing 13 years ago and has since competed in races both nationally and internationally. To date he has competed in more than 50 international and national marathons, 300 half marathons and 200 speed races.  Mario’s dream is to have a handcycle so that he can take his training and racing to a whole new level.

Hello, my name is Mario and I’m from Costa Rica. My dream is to have a handcycle. Thank you very much!  Pura Vida!

100% of donations go to the person you choose. Dream Travel pays the bank fees on all transactions.

2004 to 2019 FOCUS on CANADA

Despite growing up with a single mother of 5 and in a very poor household, we always had a roof over our heads and food on the table. I wore hand-me-down clothes from my sisters (yes, my sisters) and used their old note books in school, writing in the margins. I never felt poor as our house was full of love and we had what we needed.

When I first started my business I lived just off of Whyte Avenue in Edmonton where there were a lot of homeless people and I befriended quite a few.  Despite the very rough start to my business, I still found enough money to scrape together to feed and clothe as many as I could. For those of you that know, Edmonton’s winters are brutal and I couldn’t imagine how difficult it was for them.  Some of the greatest lessons and stories I have from those early years come from people living on the streets.  I kid you not!  If we’re at an event together, just ask me and I’ll share some as they are truly amazing!

In Edmonton I donated constantly to the Mustard Seed and a few homeless shelters and I made large scale Timmy runs to feed 100 at a time. It was hard to do at the time, but it gave me great pleasure knowing I was doing what I could. Besides, as I said, it paid back in ways I couldn’t have imagined.

As the years went on and Dream Travel did better and better, I was able to make much larger donations to those in need.  We donated $10,000 to the Pathfinder Youth Society, a program helping at-risk youths in Vancouver.

We are still and will always been an Alberta-owned business and therefore we will always contribute locally, but we also want to support our global family in destinations that we escort our groups.