Tag Archives: Service

Go Farther and Discover

Uriel is a standout student at De LaSalle High School. He was recommended to us by our partners at HighSight because he wanted to go abroad on a service trip last summer. Farther Foundation helped Uriel travel to Ghana on a cultural immersion and service program run by Putney Student Travel.

Uriel shared a little of his experience with us:uriel-4

“The sun is as strong as it has ever been. It was hard to breathe because of the smell that lingered around the markets because of the fish and other livestock being sold. It was definitely an uncomfortable month without having the luxury of an a/c and running water. Mornings would always be humid in the bunk house and nights would be cold at the dinner table. There was never a perfect temperature but it was just something that you would get accustomed to. The environment and the people would help you get through it. Knowing that the person right next to you has also not taken a long hot shower and is sweating as much as you can be comforting. Doing community service in Ghana, West Africa was definitely an eye opening experience.”

His trip leaders with Putney Student Travel thought highly of Uriel as well. They wrote:

“We were so proud of Uriel for coming on this journey. There were a lot of firsts for him: first time flying, leaving the USA, seeing an ocean, to name a few. Those little things really captured for us the idea of “going beyond,” which he did so well and was thrilled to have experienced.

Uriel was awarded our MVT — Most Valuable Traveler. He would constantly ask how else he could help on projects, and interacted with the local community members. He was a great ambassador for Putney and the United States of America. Each day he would blow us away with his unending work ethic, critical thinking skills, and willingness to try new things!

We both had very meaningful and long discussions with Uriel on several occasions. His love for family, devotion to education, and commitment to new experiences greatly impressed both of us. He shared his dreams and aspirations with us and we were just so honored to be part of this eye-opening adventure. Uriel is a very deep thinking person and talking to him and hearing his different stories made an impact on us both.”

You can help. Farther Foundation and the students we serve depend on the tax deductible donations from people like you to make these life changing experiences possible. Visit our website to make a donation online.

Farther Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization providing scholarships to low-income students to inspire them to reach their highest aspirations through educational travel experiences.

Go Farther!

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Lizbeth Finds a Second Family in Panama

Lizbeth with her host family in Panama

Lizbeth (Center) with her host family in Panama

When Lizbeth first applied to Farther Foundation for an enrichment travel scholarship she was excited that a home stay with a local family would be part of her program because she would,

learn more about the family’s culture by being a part of their daily lives.”

Lizbeth was awarded a scholarship and chose to participate in an American Field Service (AFS) program in Panama, where she would learn the local language and culture, provide service in the community and indeed live with a local family.

Our students, when thrust into new environments often meet unexpected experiences and emotions. Lizbeth certainly did as well, but her expectation about the value of a family experience in a new culture was all she expected and more:.

“I traveled thousands of miles from my home to La Chorrera, Panama. When my group arrived at San Francisco de Paula, the community service site, the whole community gave us a warm welcoming. As I was walking with the group, the AFS volunteer pulled me aside and introduced me to a woman who hugged me and shouted for joy. The AFS volunteer introduced the woman as my host mom.

I had four siblings and a host dad. My host mom worked, cleaned, cooked, and helped my host siblings with their homework. She was always putting her needs last and everyone else’s needs first. I recall one late Sunday night she was helping my younger host brother with his homework. I sat down at the table and saw they were working on English. My host mom looked puzzled and asked me if I could read and help my brother with his work because her eyesight was giving up. I was delighted to help my host brother. My host mom hugged and thanked me so much for helping out especially on a late Sunday night. She then sat down and began to tell me she was diagnosed with Colon cancer about a year ago. She started telling me about her treatments and how it has caused her to be very tired lately. I felt she accepted me as a member of her family, and I accepted her as my inspiration. Ever since, I started to see life in a completely new perspective.

This experience made me realize how beautiful life is and how grateful I am to have another day to live a healthy life alongside my family. This program made me realize my capabilities of helping others by listening to them and performing community service for them.”

There are many things our students learn when they challenge themselves to take a bold step beyond the familiar, but the most important lesson is that they can and will have an impact.

Farther Foundation and the students we serve depend on the tax deductible donations from people like you to make these life changing experiences possible. Visit our website to make a donation online.

Follow our work more closely by subscribing to this blog or liking “Farther Foundation” on Facebook. Thank you for your support.

Farther Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization providing scholarships to low-income students to inspire them to reach their highest aspirations through educational travel experiences.

Go Farther!

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Making an impact while studying abroad

When Juan first applied to Farther Foundation for an enrichment travel scholarship he said,

Photo

Juan is front and center

I’ve always been confined to the boundaries of the city’s south side. While this in itself is not necessarily bad, it’s not what I want my life to be.”

Well, Juan earned his scholarship and was able to participate with The Road Less Traveled on a community service and outdoor adventure program in Cost Rica.

Upon his return, Juan shared with us a list of all the “Firsts” he encountered during his program including:

  • The first flight abroad – in fact the first trip of any kind that he was old enough to remember.
  • The first time to have a room without a family member.
  • The first time doing construction work.
  • The first time cooking for others.
  • The first time in a rain forest.
  • The first time swimming, rafting, surfing, kayaking or zip lining.

But the most important first he shared was:

“On our last day doing service, we got to hang out with the local people from the area and the school staff. We played games and had a water balloon fight. Then the school staff and community had a little present for us. They gave us a mug that said “Costa Rica” and had candy in the inside. It was the best gift I could ever get and it was the first time I felt like I made an impact.”

There are many things our students learn when they challenge themselves to take a bold step beyond the familiar, but the most important lesson is that they can and will have an impact.

Farther Foundation and the students we serve depend on the tax deductible donations from people like you to make these life changing experiences possible. Visit our website to make a donation online.

Follow our work more closely by subscribing to this blog or liking “Farther Foundation” on Facebook. Thank you for your support.

Farther Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization providing scholarships to low-income students to inspire them to reach their highest aspirations through educational travel experiences.

Go Farther!

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Community Service in Argentina

ImageChristopher is a senior at De La Salle High School in Chicago and a participant in the Highsight program, one of the great organizations we partner with to provide academic and social support to students from low-income families in Chicago.

In his scholarship application to Farther Foundation, Christopher said he wanted to travel abroad so he could, “assist people in need to the best of my abilities” and “open my eyes and experience what else there is in this world besides what I encounter on a daily basis.”

Farther Foundation awarded Christopher a scholarship that helped him travel to Argentina on a four-week community service program with Putney Student Travel. Upon his return Christopher shared some of his thoughts and experiences with us:

My experience has taught me that there are a lot of things to look forward to in life and that hope is never absent in someone’s life regardless of their life status and positions. I have been motivated by what I experienced, thinking about the things I am capable of doing for others and if I was to put myself in a position to make a difference, how I really could.

I will forever remember the boy named Jose who told me “Cristobal, porfavor ben a visitarnos cuando te haces el presidente de los Estados Unidos… Nosotros somos tus amigos y queremos que regreses, no nos olvides”. That translates to “Chris, please come back and visit us when you are the President of the United States… we are your friends and we want you to return.” 

Farther Foundation was formed to help students break free from the constraints of poverty and gain experiences that propel them toward their highest aspirations. We provide opportunities for eager and deserving students to travel worldwide and interact with individuals who have diverse backgrounds and experiences. They participate in programs where they are immersed in new cultures and experiences, learn and develop skills, provide community service, cultivate leadership potential and attain personal growth.

You can help support students like these to have life changing educational experiences. Visit our website to learn more about our work and to make a tax deductible gift online.

Farther Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization providing scholarships to low-income students to inspire them to reach their highest aspirations through educational travel experiences.

Go Farther!

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Mid-year report now available online

AnSchool Girlsother 18 eager and deserving students have been awarded Farther Foundation enrichment scholarships to help them participate in unique and life changing educational travel programs this summer. Our scholars will travel to 12 countries on 5 continents and study at three U.S. universities.

Meanwhile, we keep getting exciting news from our alumni from past years who are just now deciding where they will go to college in the fall.

Our Mid-year Report is now available online for you to catch-up on all of our recent activity and to learn how you can help make more of these opportunities possible.

Go Farther!

Farther Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization providing scholarships to low-income students to inspire them to reach their highest aspirations through educational travel experiences.

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New Year’s Resolution

Dolores in ArgentinaAs we arrive at the turn of another year, Farther Foundation resolves to continue to provide opportunities for deserving students to have life changing experiences across the country and around the world. We would like to thank all of our supporters whose donations and encouragement make all that we do possible.

During 2010, sixteen students received Farther Foundation scholarships to participate in programs on six continents. They provided community service in Korea and Argentina, learned French and lived with a host family in France, tested their mettle against the rugged geography of New Zealand, dug for dinosaur fossils in South Dakota, immersed themselves in the art and cultural history of Uganda and much more.

We’ve already shared in previous blog posts some of what our students had to say about their experiences. Here is some of what we’ve heard from travel program providers, parents, and our 2009 alumni who have now gone off to college:

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all! I am enjoying my college experience and I have survived my first semester as a freshman already. I am currently involved in fencing, Vista (spanish club), Tango club, and Eucharistic ministry for the church. I took English class, Biology 101, Calculus, and a Women’s and Gender Studies class.

— Nitza traveled to Argentina in the summer of 2009, she is now a Freshman at Williams College in Massechussettes

This was a new experience for us as well because this was the first time he left the house alone to a place he had never been to before. This was a positive experience because I have seen, since he returned, that he is more responsible in his decisions. This program gave us all an experience that helped us. I now have an idea of what it would be like if Ulises were to leave again.

— Benigna, mother of Ulises who traveled to New Zealand for six weeks this past summer

She was really one of our gems in the crowd.  Her motivation and can-do attitude were very infectious to our staff, and her name resonated throughout the program (all in positive ways).  I think that we’ll be able to offer another partial scholarship to the Farther Foundation if you’re able to find another great student like Nora!

— Jeremy Updike, Director of Summer Programs, Carleton College about Nora who participated in their Summer Science Institute

I felt that this program has changed my daughter in multiple ways. She came back with a better grasp of how college and being on your own would be like.  She has taken on a better knowledge of the outside world and her surroundings. This program really helped her figure out what type of school she would be interested in and why. It helped her come to the conclusion that she wants to go to a competitive, middle size school. This program was a must in my daughter’s life and Farther Foundation made it happen.

— Veronica, mother of Chelsea who participated in a summer pre-med program at Vanderbilt University in 2009 and is now a freshman at Colgate University

The University of Chicago is great! I’m really glad I decided to come here. We’re about halfway done with the first quarter and I’m enjoying all of my classes as well as campus life.

— Anna traveled to peru in 2009 and is now enjoying life as a student at University of Chicago

Thank you again to all our supporters. It is not too late to make a tax deductible contribution that will benefit your 2010 taxes and our 2011 scholarship budget. Visit our website to donate via credit card online or send us a check in the mail. If you would like to hear about our activities more often (about twice per month) visit the Farther Foundation Facebook page and “Like” us.

Happy New Year,

David Weindling

Founder and President, Farther Foundation

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Student essay contest winners for 2010

Each year, Farther Foundation provides opportunities for economically disadvantaged high school students from the Chicago area to travel worldwide and interact with individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences. They participate in programs where they are immersed in new cultures, learn and develop skills, provide service, cultivate leadership potential and attain personaDoloresl growth.

Upon their return, the students submit photos and essays describing their experiences. A panel from Farther Foundation selects its favorites and awards cash prizes to the students who submitted the top three in each category. During 2010, our scholars traveled to six different continents and returned with wonderful stories epitomizing the joy and enlightenment of discovering new places, new people and new experiences.

Click on the links to read excerpts from the top essays as selected by our panel:

1st  place: Dolores describes her experience in Argentina where she volunteered at a center for children with disabilities.

2nd place: Chandrea traveled to Mexico and experienced a series of “firsts” which continues to impact her life.

3rd  place: Abbi traveled to Israel and found commonality amongst people in a new and foreign setting.

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