This year, GV has entered into a new partnership with Treehouse, a local organization providing youth in foster care the academic and socio-emotional support to help them graduate high school with a plan for the future. With the support of the CFOS and Seattle Foundation, Seattle International Foundation and major donors, four Treehouse students were able to participate in GV’s First Year Leadership Program and two of the participants will be continuing on with GV for a second year as members of the Youth Board.
Our participants write below about their transformative experience in Guatemala.
“On my way to the airport my body started shaking with excitement and fear. This was my first time on a plane, my first time in another country. I couldn’t help but think that maybe this trip would be the trip that would change everything. And I was right; it was the trip that changed everything for me.”
“Thanks to Global Visionaries, a big part of me changed that night and I will never forget it.. This experience has inspired me to want to go to college and study physical and mental disabilities so that one day I can help people who are not able to help themselves.”
“My experience in Guatemala was unforgettable. I can now find the beauty in almost anything and I feel like I found who I am. The groups reflections were the most powerful for me, hearing others’ questions and theories makes you think about your own. They help you let go of whatever you have been holding back for years. There was this one reflection in particular, I could never forget about. We just got done with the hospital and we were talking about what happened and what you would have done differently. I thought of my experience with one of the Abuelas (“Grandmother”, the name given to female, elderly patients) at the hospital. I could not speak with her because I didn’t know what to say in her language and she was a woman without speech. I didn’t know what to do so I just stood there and did nothing. Later on, I realized that if she had been my grandmother, I would have wanted someone to talk to her, help her out, or push her around in her wheelchair. Realizations like this one, made me and my group cry. It was great because we all became so close during the trip that we were able to comfort each other. I also realized that we weren’t just pointing out what we did wrong in the hospital, we were pointing out what we can do next time, what we can change.”
About the partnership
Due to the unique challenges faced by youth in foster care, less than half graduate from high school on time, and fewer than two percent will continue on to graduate with a four-year degree. GV’s programming engages youth in a manner that supports Treehouse’s goal to ensure that by 2017 foster youth will graduate high school at the same rate as their peers and will have a plan for their future. Participation in youth-led advocacy and leadership programs like GV have been shown to significantly impact foster youth’s sense of identify and community. GV is proud to work with Treehouse to help foster youth get to graduation day and beyond.
Scholarships were funded by support from the CFOS, Seattle Foundation, Seattle International Foundation and individual donors.