Kids' FUN Project One Spark

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Kids Foundation for Uniting Nations

Kids Foundation for Uniting NationsA global network of kids working together toward positive change

Who we areCourtney Fletcher, founder of Kids FUNI started this organization after a project I did in India, connecting kids with students in Jacksonville through Skype and video. Kids here in the U.S. asked question such as, So, do you guys all ride around on elephants? I realized how little we know about other cultures, and in an age where technology is at our fingertips, students in the U.S. should have better access to connect and communicate with as well as help kids in other parts of the world.

Forjando Alas Youth Center, opening day 2011

Our ProjectsForjando Alas Youth Center, Uvita Costa RicaAn after school program to keep kids safe and healthy. We teach English and healthy living through technology, art, and environmental education, giving kids tools for a brighter future. Around the World Peace QuiltChildren from Costa Rica, Jacksonville and Canada made quilt squares to be sewn together and auctioned for kids in need. We welcome the addition of other nations to represent the mosaic of cultural diversity. Each project has an accompanying video about the kids that contributed.

Our Projects ContinuedWater Bottle Cans & Trash MappingStudents at Stanton & Fletcher High Schools were inspired by their last trip to Costa Rica, to build recycling cans out of used water bottles. They are collecting bottles to build later this year! They also do monthly beach clean ups where they will use GPS units to map trash and compare with the coastal town of Uvita, Costa Rica. The K-Kids at Mayport Elementary will also be joining these projects in the Spring.

All About Me StorybooksStudents in our club at Landrum Middle School have been paired up as mentors with kids at Forjando Alas Youth Center in Uvita. They will create nonfiction storybooks about their mentee and have them professionally bound. They will bring these books to the kids on their service trip in June.

What we are trying to doThe idea is this: If we can use new technology to foster international friendships, we can help the next generation become global ambassadors!

We need help with the start-up funding to bring more student groups to visit and volunteer in Costa Rica. With the commission we earn from this, our kids projects will be fully funded and we wont have to rely on grants and donations.

Costa RicaIndiaJacksonville

Canada

What we need to do itOur annual budget is very low; with no administrative costs so that all money goes towards kids programs. We need to become SUSTAINABLEBring more student groups from Jacksonville and around the U.S. to UvitaA website for student travelA youth center owned by the foundation

Why were the ones to do itWe are biologists, lawyers, teachers, and business professionals dedicated to helping, connecting, and inspiring kids.

I will never give up on helping children. After India, I realized how lucky we are. I want to help kids here understand this and learn how to use their privileges for the betterment of others and for our planet. I decided to start this project at the age of 25 and have forced myself to learn about business, websites, budget-making and grant-writing and so much more, so that this foundation will be successful. I work every day on these things as well as mentoring students and teachers on projects ranging from sustainable seafood to fundraising for at-risk youth. Courtney Fletcher