On Thursday, March 31, eight Hudson Valley “Youth Ambassadors” boarded a charter bus in New Paltz bound for JFK Airport. The group, part of the Maya Gold Foundation’s “Heart of Gold Adventures” initiative, traveled to Nepal to participate in a variety of service, cross-cultural and educational programs. Many teenagers have organized fundraising events to support their participation and all are bringing donations for their visit to Ganesh Primary and Secondary School in the suburbs of Kathmandu and Tinkanaya School in the countryside of Benighat . The teenagers will visit both schools during the two-week trip.
The goal of Heart of Gold Adventures is to provide teens with an educational experience that includes cultural awareness and appreciation, service to others, and experiential learning in a foreign culture, so they can gain a better knowledge of themselves and of the world. The Youth Ambassadors will work alongside leaders and youth from the Himalayan Children’s Charities (HCC) and the Sisterhood of Survivors Network (SASANE), two Nepalese NGOs that support youth through a variety of programs. The Youth Ambassadors will also participate in lectures given by professors from Kathmandu University and Central Mahatma Gandhi University, visit the US Embassy in Kathmandu and attend local craft workshops. They will visit several UNESCO World Heritage sites, attend a Dharma conference at a local Buddhist monastery, learn about indigenous Newari culture, complete renovations to a rural school, and visit a Tibetan refugee camp to learn learn more about the occupation of Tibet and the culture of the diaspora. .
The Youth Ambassadors will report on their journey via daily posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram on the Maya Gold Foundation social media pages (@mayagoldfoundation). All are encouraged to follow their journey and interact through online comments. Upon their return to the Hudson Valley, each teen will share their experiences through one-on-one community presentations May 22 and 26 at the Elting Library in New Paltz.
For more information contact [email protected]