international service: africa.
discover your passion through service
The idea is simple...
the year of service, the participants experience one
month in a foreign country, organizing and creating
service projects of their own initiative. At the beginning
of the year, the participants are split into teams and
are each assigned a country in which they will serve.
This year, participants are in groups of 3-4 so that
a greater sense of ownership and true cultural integration
can occur. This revolutionary standard of having small
teams is the core reason for the substantial shift that
happens within each individual while oversees. The level
of responsibility for the project and the level of true
interaction with local people are at a height that is
very rarely seen today.
There are three equally important
parts to this aspect of growth; the first is the planning
and preparation that happens before leaving the U.S.
This time focuses on gaining practical skills in teaching
character education, learning the basics of travel and
also an exercise for personal creativity as each team
decides what type of service would target the needs
in their chosen country. The second part is the time
Outwardly, each team’s
main mission is to create projects that will make a
lasting difference, however, another primary aspect
of their time in country is to experience a new culture
and through that experience gain a deeper understanding
of the world and of themselves. Through changing the
life of a stranger on the opposite side of the world,
their own life can be changed.
The final part of this project
is the recording and reflecting process that happens
upon returning to the U.S. A significant part of the
international projects is creating a report that can
allow future years to either duplicate the project,
or build upon the foundation that has already been built.
This time also entails personal reflection and/or journaling
to allow experiences to imprint and to let the lessons
that were learned create a tangible impact on the lives
of the individuals.
Fostering leadership: Why ISP?
There is no better way to understand a new culture than
to experience it. A sense of expansion, widened perspective,
and a deeper understanding of the world can be gained
through international service, if one truly wants to understand
it. By experiencing living in a developing country, it
can open the eyes, and stretch the heart to a depth that
is rarely touched by those who never have the blessing
of serving a third world nation. There is only a limited
outlook on the world for those who have never had the
opportunity of traveling outside the comforts of their
own home, their own country. A broader outlook on the
world allows for a deeper understanding, and teaches through
experience the meaning behind true compassion.
Through the International Service Project participants
are able to not only give empowerment to those that they
meet, but gain a sense of their own self-empowerment.
Projects are created entirely by the participants, which
gives each individual a sense of ownership and responsibility.
The international experience provides the tools to give
participants the key to tapping into their own potential,
and the key to unlock it at anytime in their lives. Through
the ISP experience, the goal is for participants to feel
that they can go about pursuing anything it is they put
their mind to, that their dreams can become a reality,
and that there is no reason why they cannot create and
manifest whatever it is they want in life.
are we going to fund our projects?
participants of NGA are able to take complete ownership
over their trip overseas through three month-long fundraising
campaigns before their trip to Africa. The month of January
is dedicated to raising funds from family/ friends, and
other contacts primarily throughout the U.S. Currently
we are working on receiving federal grants to fund our
projects so that we can further expand and grow our program.