I don't quite know where to start (besides, I should have gotten this out earlier today!). About two years ago, my oldest daughter, M, fell in love with all things India thanks in part to a blog post by Kristin Cashore. See, Kristin was going on about this Bollywood movie called Om Shanti Om, so I decided to watch it. M came in while I was in the middle of it, and was literally mesmerized. She then proceeded to obsess over India, and decided that what she'd really like is to spend a year there.
I figured it all would pass, and didn't do anything to help or hinder her obsession. But, it persisted, and she did enough research to decide that the Rotary Youth Exchange would be a good match for her. She contacted one of the local clubs, did the legwork to find out what it took to graduate early, and put the wheels in motion.
Fast forward to right now: through the help of the Rotary, she's raised $1900 of the estimated $5000 total we figure it'll take for her to spend a year in New Delhi. She's turning in her application to get matched with a family (or two) there. She's got her passport, and most of her shots. She's saved what she can from gifts and allowance money, since we decided that it was more important for her to keep her 4.0 while taking a double load of classes this year than to get a job. Though she will go looking for something for this summer (she can't leave for India before she turns 17 in August) as soon as she finishes finals in late April/early May.
Which brings me to the point of this. Hubby and I are comfortable, financially, but not by any means well off. So, we're turning to our friends (and readers and family) to see if they'd like to pitch in to help our daughter make a difference. Maybe not while she's in India (though she's going to look for chances to help and learn the culture) but in the future. We've set up a Go Fund Me site, and are inviting people to contribute what they can.
What's in it for you? Well, we're going to work with M -- who is not a natural writer or journalist -- to set up a blog detailing her experiences. But beyond that, just the warm fuzzies you get from helping a good kid do something amazing.
I'd love it if you could help out. I won't hold it against you if you can't. In these tough economic times, I understand. But every little bit makes a difference. And I appreciate every little bit that's already been donated.