although in a more westerly direction...
Back when Marcel was in fourth year at high school, he was chosen as one of the forty pupils in his year (of 250 kids) to be given the opportunity to take part in the India World Challenge. The kids spent a year fund-raising before flying to India where their time was split between trekking through the Himalayas, through a natural tiger reserve and working on a project to bring water to a mountain village that had no water supply. Although the digging and carrying in the heat was hard work, getting to see how these simple people lived and getting to help them changed Marcel forever and he came back an older, more mature and incredibly caring young man. He will always remember the gratitude in those villagers eyes and in the warm hugs of their children. So when Charlotte got the opportunity to apply last month for the equivalent experience, this time in Nicaragua, she jumped at it and hoped that her determination would show through her more reserved character. I hoped too that the school would see beyond her shyness and pick her as one of just forty kids once again. Many pages were written as an application explaining what she thought she could bring to the expedition and then the waiting game began. Today (I'm hoping the fact that it is April Fool's Day is meaningless!) it was a very smiley girl who jumped into my car at home time, despite the torrential rain and freezing temperatures. I wasn't expecting her to have heard back yet, but she proudly pulled a letter from her pocket offering her the chance to follow in her brother's footsteps, helping those whose lives are a bit different to her own. I hope she comes back as humbled and inspired by it all next summer as her brother did two years ago! I'm proud to see both her caring nature and her wanderlust rewarded with this opportunity.
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