Who we serve: We will serve at-risk students in the second through fourth grades in the Bronzeville community of Chicago. We plan to extend our program to those students in the fifth through tenth grades by our third year of operation, and to students in the eleventh and twelfth grades by our fourth year of operation.
What we do: We will take our participants on a variety of local, educational excursions to broaden the worlds in which they live and to expand their minds. As we extend our program to older students, we plan, to widen the spectrum for those older participants to excursions on the regional and national scales, and eventually, to excursions of international scope.
Where we serve: Our program will serve students in the Bronzeville community of Chicago. Our goal is eventually to extend our program to other underserved neighborhoods and communities in Chicago, e.g., Englewood, Gresham, and Garfield Park.
Why we serve: Inequality permeates the neighborhoods and communities of Chicago. Among the areas in which inequality is most apparent is the educational system. These disparities go far beyond the school structure and affect multiple aspects of students’ lives. At-risk youth from underserved communities often lack many of the opportunities that stimulate intellectual curiosity and help children to develop into self-aware, globally conscious members of society. Among such opportunities is traveling, which we believe creates edifying experiences. We want to take our participants out of the confines of their communities, out into the world, and introduce them to new experiences, perspectives, and ideas to enable them to unlock their full potential.
When we serve: Our program will meet after school, Mondays through Thursdays, October through June, and Monday through Thursday afternoons in July, and two Saturdays per month, October through July. The after-school programming will be primarily comprised of homework assistance and educational lessons focused around the excursions and service days, which will occur on the Saturdays.
How we serve: We recently received our 501(c)(3) status. We are going to apply for government and private grants, host fundraisers, and seek in-kind donations, corporate donations, and individual donations to fund our program adequately. Upon securing grants, we will be seeking an enthusiastic, creative elementary school teacher and a bright, highly-motivated intern to work alongside our executive director in completing our team. We will eventually enlist several dedicated volunteers to join our team in our commitment to our mission.
Board of Directors
Mark Powell - Chairperson
Mark has done a great deal of work for a variety of charities for many years. He has volunteered with charity organizations such as Round Table and 41 Club, has raised money for the B Positive Foundation and Nightingale House Hospice, along with various charities including Cystic Fibrosis, and cancer research, and has also organized numerous Make-a-Difference-Days (MADD) that have benefited children’s schools, playgrounds, National Trust areas, residential homes, and communal garden areas.
Working in a myriad of roles, during his 35-year career in banking at Global FTSE 100 Company, Barclays, among others, has provided him a great deal of experience in financial operations and made him an expert at balancing the books.
Of equal significance in making him an exemplary Chairperson, is his passion for travel. He has traveled extensively in Europe, Asia, and the U.S. and fully understands the potential of travel to expand minds and to broaden the ways in which people view the world.
In his own words "Traveling helps to break down any negative, pre-conceived ideas people may have about other people, cultures, towns, cities, and countries. Traveling is addictive and once one starts, he or she will always want to do more of it as it broadens one's mind, thinking, and ambitions."
Lisa Hansen - Treasurer
Lisa has spent half of her career in the finance sector, at Standard and Poor's, and half of her career in the non-profit sector, currently at ActionAid UK as a Supporter Data Analyst, and previously in donor research at Make-A-Wish Foundation, all of which have given her a unique combination of knowledge that makes her ideal to serve as Treasurer.
Along with her diversified experience, Lisa has a passion for travel which began as a child as she traveled with her family on road trips, and which continued throughout her teenage years, as her participation in sports took her to competitions across the U.S. After college, she began to travel internationally, and eventually moved abroad to London, UK, a decision that was made, in part, because of its easier access to travel across Europe. Lisa recognizes the potential that travel has to increase one's understanding of people's differences and expose one to new ideas. In her own words, "Traveling opens your mind to the how and why people 'tick'; it provides one insight into why people do things the way they do and how ways of life have transformed over time."
Peter McFadden - Vice Chairperson/Secretary
Peter's passion for travel was sparked at a young age by his aunt, who often took him with her traveling. This passion led to his career in the travel industry of more than 25 years. Having held leadership positions at American Express, Carlson Companies, Orbitz Worldwide, and currently at Expedia, he has amassed a wealth of knowledge of the business, and has built up a considerable network, all of which will prove significantly beneficial in his dual role as Vice Chairperson/Secretary.
Peter knows, first-hand, the ways in which traveling can expand one's mind and broaden one's perspective. In his own words, "For those of us who felt out of place as kids, traveling is a potent elixir to build confidence and a network of people with different backgrounds. Traveling abroad has given me a multicultural point of view that has enriched me both personally and professionally."