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Help Support My Fellowship! 

Hi guys,

My name is Cierra and in 2 weeks I will be graduating from high school. While all of my friends are worried about roommates, meal plans, and why they can’t have a rice cooker in their dorm room, I am preparing to stray from that traditional path as I, along with 100 other young people, will be moving to a foreign country for 8 months. This is because I am a 2015 Global Citizen Year Fellow.

Global Citizen Year is a leadership development program that gives high school graduates the opportunity to experience life in foreign culture and gain skills that will be essential to their success in our increasingly globalized world. The above video was created by Emily Hwang (2013 Global Citizen Year Fellow).  Beginning in September 2014, I will be living and working in an apprenticeship with a local educational organization in a small Ecuadorian Community until April 2015. Following my completion of Global Citizen Year, my college will be awarding me 30 credits towards my degree. 

This is an amazing, once in a lifetime opportunity and I can not wait to begin this journey. It would not be possible, however, without the Global Citizen Year Fellows Fund which provides financial assistance to over 80% of Fellows and fully funded fellowships to about 20%. Each Fellow is to raise a minimum $2,500 that goes directly into the Fellows Fund in order to help provide aid for the following year. It is also a leadership challenge which tests my ability to mobilize my network, effectively communicate my story, and marshal resources to support my cause, all of which are skills that will benefit me as an entrepreneurial leader. 

So, please, take the time and donate to the Global Citizen Year Fellow’s Fund by clicking HERE to visit my donation page and clicking HERE to learn more about Global Citizen Year. EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS!

Additionally, I will be posting to my Global Citizen Year Fellow’s blog throughout the time I’m in Ecuador. You can subscribe to receive email updates each time that I post. Click HERE to see blogs from past years and keep an eye out for my profile. I will share it at the end of June when it is available!

Thanks!

P.S. Even if you are unable to donate right now, please share this with anyone and everyone! Thanks for your support!!

I met my neighbors today...

I went for a walk through my neighborhood as the sun was going down and I took a wrong turn on one of the twisting unmarked streets. I found myself on a deserted dirt road, bordered on both sides by empty lots. These weren’t your standard American empty lots with some scraggly grass and a few empty cans and stray pieces of litter. These were Brazilian empty lots, pieces of unclaimed jungle with plants that are bigger and more badass than I am. It had just gotten dark enough to be hard to see, but not so dark that the streetlights had clicked on. I live in a safe neighborhood, and I was feeling adventurous, so I kept going.

The stretch of road was rough, and the gravel hadn’t been compacted like it had on the more traveled roads. I was about 20 feet in when I started to hear some rustling behind me. I listened closely, cautious, but the only sounds were my footsteps and my accelerating heartbeat. I walked a little further. The rustling got louder and some squeaking joined in. I couldn’t tell if the sound was human or not. I started walking a little faster.

The sound was coming from both sides of the road now, and it was getting closer. It wasn’t just behind me anymore either. I could eat rustling and squeaking from all directions. I almost turned around, but I was nearly to the end of the street and I knew I could get home from the intersection. There were only about 20 feet left. Then 15. Then all of a sudden a big dark shape burst out of the grass right in front of me, running as fast as it could and squeaking loudly. It had a blunt head and small ears and a tiny tail. I must have startled, because it turned to look back at me, and then disappeared into the grass on the other side of the road.

And that’s how I met the capybaras that live in my neighborhood.

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This is a video about my time in Ecuador as a 2015 Global Citizen Year Fellow. I lived in Ecuador for 8 months with a host family and worked at a women’s shelter. This experience was unlike any other that I’ve ever had in my life. Making this video, my capstone, was a way to bring closure to that experience.

Please take the time to watch and share this. 

Maya Angelou has a way of comforting. When I began to seriously read her work, towards the end of 10th grade, I felt as though I had found something that I did not know I needed. Dr. Angelou’s non-fiction makes me feel as though I am on the back porch of her home in Winston-Salem in late May drinking sweet tea and listening to the bees sing. This collection of essays, especially, feels like home, and I refuse to leave it. This year, I will carry it with me not in the gristle of my earlobe or at the corners of my eyes, but in my backpack, in my hands, and in my heart the whole way.
— 

An Excerpt from On Maya Angelou, loneliness, and being the boss, my first post on my Fellowship Blog.

Please subscribe, by entering your email on the right side of the page, to follow my experiences spending my first year of college living and working in Ecuador. 

Help Support My Fellowship!

In next week I will graduate from high school. While all of my friends are worried about roommates, meal plans, and why they can’t have a rice cooker in their dorm room, I, along with 100 other young people, am preparing to move to Ecuador for 8 months because I am a Global Citizen Year Fellow.

Global Citizen Year is a program that gives high school graduates the opportunity to experience life in foreign culture and gain skills that will be essential to their success in our increasingly globalized world.

This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and it would not be possible without the Global Citizen Year Fellows Fund which provides financial assistance to over 80% of Fellows. Each Fellow is to raise a minimum $2,500 that goes directly into the Fellows Fund in order to help provide aid for the following year.

So, please, take the time and donate to the Global Citizen Year Fellow’s Fund by clicking HERE to visit my donation page and clicking HERE to learn more about Global Citizen Year. Even if you can only donate $1 or $5, EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS!

Thank you for your support!

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Laura’s experience a year of coming out. 

globalcitizenyear.fundly.com
Libby Parker-Simkin Fundraising for GCY Scholarships

To help American youth cultivate a global consciousness through service work in the developing world.

Hi Friends!

I’m going to Brazil for a year to do service work with Global Citizen Year. I can participate in this program because I got a scholarship. In the spirit of that generosity and in the interest of paying my experiences forward, I am working to raise $2500 for next year’s scholarship fund. Please donate! Every dollar helps. Thanks!