Happy International Volunteer Day to all volunteers! If you are a volunteer, take today to celebrate yourself as the world recognizes your selfless contributions and expertise. Here at Partners of the Americas, we know our work is solely made possible because of their efforts. You are what make change possible. We THANK YOU endlessly!
My name is Danilo Angulo Molina. I am 17 years old and from Plato Magdalena, Colombia. Last October I had the opportunity to be a Youth Ambassador in the U.S. for one month, traveling to both Washington D.C. and Arkansas, and to also serve as a representative for one week at a conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Aún recuerdo como hace seis meses, cuando estaba comenzando mi semestre de pre práctica, soñaba con conseguir una oportunidad laboral envidiable para muchos y enriquecedora para mi. Era un sueño que sabía tenía que cumplir.
Liliana Hincapie Salazar has always had a passion for volunteering, specifically working with people with disabilities. So when she became a preschool teacher in 1981, she took responsibility over the school’s special education program.
Mountain climbers often speak of false summits; those hills you see that you believe represent the culmination of your voyage, only to find that there is another steeper climb to follow. For Partners, I want to tell you about one first summit that, as real and amazing as it was, was indeed false with respect to the slow and gradual process of building a multifaceted international partnership.
Estamos en una era en la cual el acceso a la tecnología se está democratizando a pasos agigantados, muestra de ello es que en Colombia el Ministerio de las Tecnologías y la Información ha puesto en marcha el plan Vive Digital, el cual propone “tender las autopistas de la comunicación” para que todos los Colombianos cuenten con una conexión a internet, un gran desafío teniendo en cuenta varios factores uno de ellos es la geografía de nuestro país ya que existen zonas con difícil acceso como lo es el caso del departamento del Amazonas, sin embargo no es algo imposible de realizar.
Edited and Published by: Pamela Picon, Intern, Partners of the Americas
Foreword by: Abraham Cisne, Senior Program Officer, Youth Engagement
Partners is proud to highlight that last year´s Youth Ambassadors (YA) program funded by the U.S. State Department was an enormous success, including challenging innovations and involving Partners chapters that haven´t hosted in a long time. The 2014 YA program involved 45 very competitively selected participants from both Venezuela and Colombia who, after a week in Washington, DC, were hosted in three states: Arkansas, Tennessee and Florida. Youth participants ages 15-17 were selected through a process that considered merit, limited income and no previous travel abroad. The program focused on leadership, service/volunteerism, mutual understanding, and long-term engagement. Its sub themes included the environment and public safety.
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.
Youth are often referred to as “the future,” or the next generation of leaders. At Partners of the Americas, we firmly believe that youth are leaders in the present. They are dynamic members of our society who actively contribute to the economic, cultural, and social development of our communities.