Cross Country Service Trip to Kenya

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Cross Country Service Trip to Kenya
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WE ARE CALLED | AUGGIES: Three years ago our team felt compelled to serve our neighbors in Peru. Our team felt that we were called to serve the community in Cusco, Peru by helping to restore a small portion of the Sacred Valley to its former grandeur doing native forest restoration. It was backbreaking work, but it was also very rewarding for all the student-athletes involved. One of our student-athletes, Rachel Frantz, who accepted a Fulbright Scholarship later that year to teach in Malaysia had this to say about her experience "This trip taught me a lot about breaking down barriers and connecting across cultures. Simply trying to speak Spanish meant a lot to the people in town [...it] blew past my expectations and brought my heart fully into the world around me. Thank you for this incredible experience -- it truly changed my life". 

Human growth and potential are the product of facing new challenges and ways of thinking. If you think back to times in your life where you grew the most, it was probably in scenarios like this -- going to college and leaving home for the first time, the first time you traveled abroad, or spent time with people from different cultures and customs. These times of growth can be as equally exhilarating as they can be challenging. 

It is with this growth in mind that the Augsburg Cross Country team is embarking on another SERVICE LEARNING TRIP, this time to KENYA!

Our team feels that we have been called this time to serve the KGSA Foundation/KIBERA GIRLS SOCCER ACADEMY in Nairobi, Kenya. Kibera is the largest urban settlement (slum) in Kenya. It is a diverse and vibrant community full of caring and hardworking individuals and families. However, Kibera faces many challenges including high unemployment, poverty, overcrowding and insecurity. It is underserved by health, education and sanitation services. Kibera’s schools face overcrowding, undereducated teachers, high teacher attrition and lack of resources to provide necessities including school lunch, water and sanitary pads. Due to high costs of school fees and materials, many students cannot afford to go to school. The Kibera Girls Soccer Academy works to address these issues by providing quality, affordable education to girls in Kibera.

KGSA provides free secondary education to 130 girls annually. The school emphasizes leadership and character development through extracurricular activities and employs university trained teachers, setting it apart from other schools in the slum.

WHY THE KIBERA GIRLS SOCCER ACADEMY? 

As student-athletes at Augsburg University, we wanted to accomplish two things with our service learning trip: 

First, we wanted to partner with an organization that champions sport and extracurricular activities as part of a well-rounded education. We know first-hand how sport fosters self-esteem, creativity, critical thinking, better academic engagement and a sense of belonging. We want to help serve our neighbors by being part of these efforts to help the girls of the Kibera neighborhood build these same skills. 

Second, we wanted to travel to a country that produces some of the best runners in the world! We will get the chance to meet world champions, Olympic gold medalists and more at the HATC (High Altitude Training Camp). 

HOW WILL YOUR DONATION HELP?

Your donation will help us cover our transportation and lodging costs to get to Kenya, so that we can fulfill our calling. Help us make a difference in these young girls' lives! Since running and sport are a big part of our lives, we will in turn be helping the girls of KGSA by collecting used soccer cleats and board games to give to them. Your donation will ensure that we are able to directly hand over the supplies we collect and interact with these young women to help them learn things like critical thinking, problem solving and enhanced self-esteem. 

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for helping to support our journey! 

Go Auggies! 

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