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International exchanges open doors, inspire service in young people

Give a young person the chance to travel, and they’ll likely never be the same. I saw this firsthand in the conversations I had with former Youth Ambassadors (YA) and YouthLead SENA participants in a recent 10-day trip to Colombia focusing on productive work meetings with stakeholders such as the U.S. Embassy, Partners Chapters, Servicio Nacional de Aprendizaje (SENA), Universidad del Norte and other schools.

Bolivian Legislative Fellow Travels to Indiana to Focus on Transparency Legislation

I arrived in Indianapolis on a warm morning on Sunday, September 28th. I remembered that morning. I was anxious because everything there was new for me. In my first week, I stayed with former U.S. Legislative Fellow, Aaron Short, and his wife Sarah and their daughter Cheyenne, who made me feel a part of their nice family. I shared beautiful moments with these great people, I learned about their ideas, feelings and beliefs, and I think they learned about my way of thinking too. Interacting with them that week and the rest of my trip was special. They gave me the possibility of trying different kinds of dishes like chili soup, flat bread pizza, and delicious desserts! They made a bonfire for me on my first weekend and invited their Latinos friends, just to give me a warm welcome. I tried the famous s'mores for the first time and I really loved them! Chocolate with marshmallow is a great mix!

Tribute to Rosaly Benchimol, Long-Time Member of Amazonas Partners

Professsor Rosaly Benchimol, who taught at the University of Amazonas and contributed many years of service to the Amazonas Chapter of Partners, passed away on January 17. Professor Benchimol was a leader in the business community of Manaus. She was a founding member of an association of businesswomen in that city and helped the organization to grow.

Changing the lives of LGBT immigrants in the United States, including my own

It's been approximately five years since I came out to myself as a gay man. It was precisely during my masters studies in the United States, when I was first exposed to a truly open and diverse environment, that I was able to overcome all of my fears and hesitations to admit it. Because of this, when I first learned about the Legislative Fellows Program run by Partners of the Americas, I was doubtful of the impact that this program could have in my personal and professional life, since I'd already “lived the American experience”.

Eradicating Child Labor Through Education

Child labor in Ecuador and Panama is prominent in the most vulnerable and socially excluded sectors: indigenous and Afro-descendant populations. These two populations account for a high incidence of poverty, social exclusion, employment and lack of education, which also explains why they are most at risk of child labor. The numbers are stark.

Tribute to Clinton Crocker, Founder of New Jersey-Haiti Partners

Partners of the Americas was saddened by the death of Clinton C. Crocker, founder and president of the New Jersey-Haiti Partners, who passed away on Oct. 9, 2014 at the age of 86. Born in Norfolk, VA, Sept. 7, 1928, moved at an early age to Schenectady, NY. Clinton attended and graduated from Westminster Choir College with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He then earned a Master of Arts from Kean College.

Being an AIDS advocate in Bolivia and in the United States

My name is Gracia Violeta Ross. I am from Bolivia and I have been living with HIV since 2000.  I am the National Chair of the Bolivian Network of People Living with HIV and AIDS (REDBOL), which remains the strongest HIV advocacy organization. In October 2014, thanks to the Legislative Fellows Program supported by the State Department and with the administration of Partners of the Americas, I did my fellowship at AIDS United, an HIV organization based in Washington, D.C. that focuses on domestic policy-making in the United States.

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