Outdoor Ambassadors Summer Camp
This photo collage, is a collection of shots of Outdoor Ambassador clubs throughout the country doing fun and amazing projects. This student organization is created and conducted by Peace Corps volunteers to empower students to the potential of a better tomorrow. My own involvement with clubs at a young age furthered a passion and desire to do something more with my life. Growing up in the land of the plenty, these opportunities to do something for me were obvious. But here in Albania, the need for encouragement is monumental for youth who face what can sometimes feel like impossible odds.
The club’s focus is bringing youth back to nature to appreciate the beauty of their country. But along with teaching camping and hiking the club installs motivation for service and a drive for making a difference in their communities. The youth of Albania are the future for this country, and this club is hoping to be a part of the creation of a morally conscious, active, positive, hopeful era of leaders.
I attended the summer camp last summer and saw the potential in so many students for exactly this. Here they weren’t saying, “Cfare mund tia besh?” (what can you do?), but asking, “Pse jo? Kur mund te fillojm?” (Why not? When can we start?).
I am writing today to let you know about the next exciting camp opportunity and the ability for you to contribute to its success. I’m involved with the Outdoor Ambassadors Committee which is currently organizing and seeking support for its third annual Summer Camp, to be held in August 2012. The training will bring together 55 students from across the country to participate in a 4-day conference to make lifelong friends, enjoy the outdoors, and learn how they can work together to be ambassadors of the outdoors. Last year their remarks afterwards were Outdoor Ambassadors, “changed me a great deal”, “given me hope”, “taught me not to waste things” (translated from participants).
To fund the Summer Camp, Outdoor Ambassadors has been selected to take part in the Peace Corps Partnership grant program. All donations are tax deductible. We are asking for only $4,700 in donations, but the remaining 25% of the total project budget will be funded by a small contribution from the children’s families, community fundraisers, and in-kind donations. Though the total grant amount may seem large, our individual costs per participant are minimal:
$20 will fund 1 student’s food and housing for 1 day;
$50 will cover food, lodging, and transportation costs for one student;
$100 will fully sponsor one participant.
You can donate here to our cause. I strongly believe in providing this with minimal cost to the families (The average Albanian yearly income for a family is $4,560.) so that youth like Sibora and many more who have demonstrated their interest and commitment can participate in this unique opportunity.
For more information about our current programs, individual clubs, regular newsletters (which I produce now), and past events including photos please visit the OA website.
I appreciate your ongoing support and hope that you will help us make these projects a reality, to help build the environmental awareness and leadership capacity of Albanian youth, as well as give more possibilities for creativity for children starting at a young age.
Shumë falemnderit dhe gjithë te mirat!
Thank you so much and all the best!