Outward Bound Scholarship Fund
Organized by: Rebecca Jones
Welcome Home Aaron!
July 21, 2016
I am back again raising money to send one student from the Barack Obama Green Charter High School on an Outward Bound Wilderness Education Course this summer. It is the mission of this charter school to inspire leaders for sustainable development with a focus on the environment, but kids in this underserved community have had few opportunities to access nature, and in many cases, little interest. My aim with this scholarship is to get them out there, to push them beyond their comfort zone, to give them a true appreciation for the things they are being taught they need to fight to protect.
Last summer we raised $2590 to send Aaron Sanchez, a kid who had never been camping before in his life, on a twelve-day environmental service and stewardship backpacking trip. He hiked 60 miles of the Appalachian Trail doing trail and park maintenance along the way. In West Philly, he worked on a community farm and painted boats. He said it was one of the hardest things he's ever done, but one day he's going to go back and hike the whole trail, from Georgia to Maine.
In his reflection essay, Aaron wrote, "I saw nature at its finest, experienced living in nature, and saw what it can offer. I appreciate nature even more than expected. I would like to show my friends what I saw during this course, and give them the same feeling I had when looking at a beautiful overlook, which is rare to find."
I caught up with Aaron recently, and it seemed this sentiment has only deepened. He is a senior now, applying to colleges, and he wrote to say,
"I have applied to those colleges looking to study Environmental Studies, or Environmental Policy. As a backup major I have decided to study communication. Before Outward Bound I wanted to study Criminal Justice, and I even thought about applying to colleges undecided. Outward Bound influenced me to start caring about environment, and made me appreciate it more. I have started to influence others younger than me to follow in footsteps that are similar to mine."
Thank you to all the donors who made Aaron's experience possible. Let's do it again!
This scholarship fund is in partnership with the Barack Obama Green Charter High School, a tax exempt organization offering students in an underserved community with low-performing district schools a college-preparatory education. If you would like your donation to be tax deductible, contact me about getting a tax-deductible receipt.