Seema Tamang, third from left, with other Rotary Youth Exchange students
By Seema Tamang, Rotary Youth Exchange student from Kathmandu, Nepal
During the 2016-17 school year, I was thrilled to be the first outbound exchange student from Nepal. Being blind, I have to admit I was a bit scared at first, as home life in the US was much different than in Nepal. I was used to sleeping in the same room with my sisters and with other girls in the dormitory at school. With my host family, I had my own room. But it did not take long to adapt, and enjoy an amazing experience during which I grew in many ways. Continue reading
Sarah Ehlinger Affotey, a former Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar, at a project site in Ghana.
By Sarah Ehlinger Affotey
After receiving an Ambassadorial Scholarship from Rotary in 2011, I put a lot of pressure on myself to “do it right,” or in other words, give Rotary a solid return on its investment. With each passing month in Ghana, what I had first deemed as peripheral – the friendships, conversations, and breakdown of stereotypes – were actually advancing world understanding, goodwill, and peace. How ingenious that this scholarship allowed me to advance Rotary’s mission subconsciously?
Children in Abansere wanting a school to call their own.
By Walter Hughes, a member of the Rotary Club of Rocky Mount, Virginia, USA, and a 2013 Rotary Champion of Change
Have you ever wished as a Rotarian that you could do something to help educate a child? Have you ever dreamed that a child could start their education at a younger age? We see children in communities all over Ghana in West Africa and realize that they should be in school. Continue reading
Isma Seetal, middle left of banner, as a team assistant during District 5320’s Rotary Youth Leadership Awards event.
By Isma Seetal, Rotary Global Grant Scholar
“Education is the best way to change one’s standard of living.”
My mother would repeat this phrase over and over. I was lucky to have been brought up by a hard-working, single, mother, who empowered my brother and me to climb the socio-economic ladder by giving us the best education she possibly could. Other children from broken families like mine did not have the same fortune. My unwavering drive to give back and improve my community led me to join the Rotaract club of Port-Louis, Mauritius in July 2012. Continue reading
Students at African Dream Academy in Liberia.
By Samuel R. Enders, Rotary Club of Yonkers-East Yonkers, New York, USA
On the 1st of July, the African Dream Academy successfully concluded our 2016-17 academic year, our sixth year educating the children of Liberia. Despite lingering effects of the Ebola outbreak (2014-15) in our country and many other poverty-related obstacles, we were able to educate 945 children this year, and provide free health care to 17,000 children under the age of six. Continue reading
Jessica Compton enjoys the view on Mount Sunday, located in the middle of the South Island in Kakatere Conservation Park.
By Jessica Compton, Rotary Global Grant Scholar to New Zealand
As a child, I dreamed of teaching. But it took until my junior year of college to return to that dream. My undergraduate coursework had prepared me for the content, if not the pedagogical strategies, to effectively engage and teach adolescents English – reading, listening and viewing; writing, speaking, and presenting. Continue reading
The Rotary club’s project trained teachers for an after school program designed to empower girls, like those above, to stay in school.
By Elizabeth Usovicz
Last April, I led a Vocational Training Team (VTT) to Malawi. The global grant project of the Rotary clubs of Limbe (Malawi) and Kansas City-Plaza (Missouri, USA) installed solar lighting in schools and trained primary school teachers in an after-school program designed to empower children, especially girls, to stay in school. Continue reading
Bethany Lerch, right, takes notes while speaking to a female attendee during a national mine awareness conference in Kabul.
By Bethany Lerch, former Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar, 2010-2011
I knew little about Rotary eight years ago when my former high school counselor encouraged me to apply for an Ambassadorial Scholarship. He was retired, but still active in Rotary, and knew a master’s was my next step. At the time, I had just graduated from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh and knew I needed to go to graduate school. But where and how? Continue reading
Peace Fellow Lindsey Doyle (far right, first row) and other prize winners with Vice-chancellor Eva Åkesson
By Magnus Elfwendahl, Rotary Club of Uppsala Carolina, Sweden
In January, I had the honor of watching as Rotary Peace Fellow Lindsey Doyle from the United States received Uppsala University’s foremost award to teachers and students supporting human rights. Doyle was awarded the Martin H:son Holmdahl prize at Uppsala’s doctoral conferment ceremony. Continue reading
Vasanth Kuppuswamy motivates students in Tamil Nadu, India.
By Bill Smyth, Rotary Club of Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, USA
It’s not every day that an eighth-grade student’s essay rivets a teacher’s attention. But this one themed “The Oxygen That Fueled the Flame” got mine.
The essay, written by a student at Buist Academy in Charleston, South Carolina, USA, described his experience two summers earlier teaching English in Tamil Nadu, India, motivated by a desire to make a difference in kid’s lives. The story would have been powerful enough if the student had been of high school age, but this was the story of a 12-year-old boy. Continue reading