The Lost Bus serves others through volunteering while inspiring educational and life changing adventures for participants.
The project began as an experimental road trip and turned into a lifestyle that continues to this day. It's a simple and contagious concept; everyone who participates wins. We help people and people help us. By dedicating efforts toward volunteering and service, The Lost Bus is able to make a big impact in the places it travels. In return, people step up with hospitality to keep us moving down the road.
Lost is an acronym for "Lending Our Services Traveling". The name directly reflects the project's mission. We are on a journey to serve others, seek adventure, simplify life, defy convention and discover America.
We travel—from big cities like Austin, Vancouver and Portland to small towns like Los Ojos, Leadville and Langlois. In California, we stood under a canopy of towering Redwoods. In the west, we climbed the highest peaks to stand atop their rocky summits. On the coastal fringes, we paddled in the Atlantic, the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific. We explored rain forests in Washington and lived in desert seclusion in New Mexico's vast Caja Del Rio.
Throughout the journey we worked with dozens of organizations and countless individuals. In Key West we worked with conservation organizations to clean up and restore mangrove ecosystems. In Colorado and Idaho we were camp counselors. In Washington and California we worked the soil, harvesting crops and educating kids. In Biloxi, Slidell, New Orleans, Galveston and Texas City, we saw the devastation of hurricane Katrina and Rita, and helped with relief efforts.
Hospitality sprang up from every nook and cranny of the country. Having given up our income, we made ourselves vulnerable, but Americans eagerly embraced our dream, supporting us with money donations, clean laundry, hot meals and encouragement. We never had much, but there was always enough to continue. Our time on the road refreshed our optimism, challenged our perceptions and renewed our hope in people. By dedicating our time to service, we were compensated with priceless relationships and a community of friends that spans the country.
By simplifying life, we grew to value relationships and experiences over things. In seeking adventure, we encountered solitude and challenges that taught us about ourselves. By living on our own terms, we learned to challenge conventional ideas and always keep an open mind. By picking up every roadside hitchhiker, our stereotypes were shattered and compassion replaced impulsive judgments. By turning off the TV, we lived more deliberately without distraction. We learned that education can occur in a variety of ways, not always resulting in a degree of certification. The three of us climbed aboard the bus as friends and walked off as brothers, bonded by a profound shared experience.
The Lost Bus has an incredible history, but just imagine the possibilities going forward...
If you've learned about the project and believe in the vision, please consider donating to keep the wheels turning.