Like many seniors, Jordyn Leslie made sure she finished all of her Eagle Valley High School credits early. But her reason for doing so wasn’t to get a head start on college classes or to enjoy some down time during her final semester of high school.
Leslie finished up early so she could volunteer in Peru during her second semester. After her nine-week volunteer stint in Peru, she will be back in Gypsum in time to walk with her classmates for the graduation ceremony this May.
Last year, Leslie traveled to Costa Rica with a small group from EVHS, and she was hooked.
“I had an opportunity to live with a local family and was immersed in the local language and culture,” said Leslie. “It was a challenging but amazing experience”.
Leslie is currently working two jobs before she leaves for Peru Feb. 8. She’s traveling with the International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ), which promotes “safe, quality and affordable volunteering programs in developing countries all over the world.” Each year, the company places thousands of volunteers in programs abroad, including Kenya, Uganda, South Africa and Sri Lanka.
“I have chosen this organization for its reputation as being supportive, affordable, safe and well organized,” said Leslie. “It also places volunteers where there is a real need so that you truly feel like you are making a difference”.
Program coordinator Chelsea Green says the decision to travel abroad is not easy and that Leslie has been working hard to earn her travel funds.
“Jordyn will spend nine weeks in Cusco, Peru teaching English and jungle conservation programs, working alongside other volunteers from all over the world,” Green said. “We look forward to having Jordyn volunteer with IVHQ in Peru”.
Leslie has set up a website to collect donations which shows she’s well on her way to making her goal.
“I also hope to purchase much needed school supplies for the children I will be working with,” she said.
Leslie plans to attend Colorado State University in the fall to major in Spanish and Psychology, with a minor in International Studies.
“ I hope to continue to travel and volunteer during breaks and summer vacations through Study Abroad programs at CSU,” she said.
For more information, check out Leslie’s page at www.GoFundMe.com/jordynvolunteer-cusco