Wednesday, January 16, 2013

To-do for College Students (and everyone else, too)

I recently contributed a post to the website emphasizing my personal belief in the power of taking what we've learned from the classroom (and outside the classroom, too) and applying it to the real world to create solutions for some of the most pressing social issues of today. Working at the Love Kids Orphanage is hopefully just the start of my lifelong journey to contribute to a better society in whatever way I can, with the skills I've learned along the way.

But the power in this application of knowledge doesn't just apply to the college-age population. Thirty-somethings, forty-somethings, fifty-somethings, sixty-somethings -- recall back to your younger, idealistic days and harness the youthful urgency you may have once felt toward pursuit of your own dreams. Passion and talent don't end at age 22, and neither should the pursuit of our dreams to create a better world.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Autism in Ghana

One thing I've learned after doing some research about prominent social issues in Africa is the prevalence of abandonment and mistreatment of children with autism and other disorders.

Around the world, stigma related to autism inhibits proper treatment and support for families and individuals who desperately need support services. I am certainly no expert on autism or other disorders but I do know that an injustice done to one individual is cause enough to learn and take action.

I find hope in the number of organizations sprouting up in Ghana dedicated to providing support services to families and individuals affected by autism and autism spectrum disorders. Learn more about these efforts by visiting the links here, and hopefully you will find hope too:

Bottom line: The need exists for passionate people to advocate for those who have to jump through hurdle after hurdle to advocate for themselves on their own. Learn more, spread the message, and jump into the passionate projects going on around the world!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Happy Travels Boutique

To earn money for my trip this summer to the orphanage in Ghana, I have opened an Etsy shop! Take a look at my shop, the Happy Travels Boutique, and spread the word to family and friends!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Every click matters! (Using Ads)

Starting within the next few weeks, you may see Google Ads in the sidebar when you view the Orphanage blog. Be assured that every time an ad is clicked, 100% of the kickback goes toward the orphanage and travel costs!

I thought this would be an efficient and easy way to contribute to the orphanage. I'm still learning the ins and outs of earning through advertising but I think that anything to help the children is worth learning about!

Every click matters! Click to your heart's content!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

A Thankfulness-Filled Day!

Today I have three BIG things to be thankful for:

- You might have noticed on my gift registry that today, the Canon All-in-One Printer vanished from the Wish List. Thanks to the Danville Pharmacy, now I will be able to easily send and print pictures back to the US during my time in Ghana, as well as improve professionalism in order to document progress and strategic planning moving forward. An important part of time spent in Ghana will focus on refining a business plan and developing a more financially sound long-term plan. Being able to document this and print and send necessary files to and from key partners will be an important part of my goals for the orphanage and foundation.

- My mom has helped and supported me so much by helping secure donations of toothbrushes and toothpaste from our local dentist, as well as working with the Danville Pharmacy to help support my travel and vision. Encouragement from parents and friends has meant so much to me!

- Close friend Nancy Weigle has been so active in pursuing donations from her circle of friends, collecting tons of toothbrushes and toothpaste as well (notice a trend?! these basic things are actually incredibly necessary). Between her efforts and the efforts of my mom, hopefully the lovely children will have clean teeth and pearly whites for quite a while!

Thank you!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Children's Spotlight: Charles!

Age: 17
African name: Akwaasi
Charles' Story: Charles is a leader among the children at Love Kids Orphanage. They each see Charles as a role model and he loves setting a good example. Charles enjoys playing games with the other kids, and helps with chores around the home. He certainly helps to look after the children and they look up to him too!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Children's Spotlight: Divine!

Today I saw pictures of a volunteer currently at the orphanage, Jane, who gave the children some books so I added some to the Walmart Wish List under the "Stationary" section that you can purchase for the kids here! Walmart Wish List I'll bring them along with me when I travel this summer.

Home: Domiabra in the Ashanti region
Age: 11 years
Favorite food: Chicken
Divine's story: Although Divine's parents are both alive, he was brought to the orphanage after his mother and father split apart because his mother struggled to care for Divine and his three siblings. Divine was no longer attending school under his mother's care but after joining the orphanage, he began classes and is now in class three. At school, Divine is one of the popular students and one day he wants to be a bank manager. For now, he's one of the cheekiest boys at the orphanage, playing pranks and being the jokester among all of the children at Love Kids!