Summer surge!

Summer is a busy time for all of us who work with children. School is out, and kids are eager for new adventures, challenges, and experiences! It is for this reason that we recruited summer interns even during our first year of operations, and will repeat the program this summer.

Based on our fantastic experience last year, we are all even more excited about the arrival of our seven 2009 interns. Many of them will join us here on the blog as they prepare for the summer, and of course throughout their time in Nablus! The interns will develop programs for 8-18 year old children from our target areas in Nablus. They’ll work closely with local volunteers to lead these activities based on their backgrounds and experience including English classes, a film project, journalism, sports, arts and Model United Nations. Additionally, the interns will use their respective organizational experience to enrich various aspects of TYO's functioning.

In addition to these seven, we will welcome two generous volunteers with a bit less time to spare, but equal will to contribute to the well-being of the Nablus community. One young woman will be visiting her family here for two months, and has offered to share her Tae Kwon Do skills with TYO children! The other will dedicate her summer break from an MBA program at INSEAD to work with volunteers on resume-writing, interview strategies, and on-the-job skills.

The last, but certainly not least, element of TYO’s Summer Surge of 2009 is the New York University chapter of Students of the World. Their volunteer film crew will spend a month with us in Nablus, documenting the first weeks of the TYO summer program. They’ll work closely with local students at An Najah University with an interest in film to develop their capacity in filming and editing. Then, they’ll return to the US to transform the footage into a professional-quality documentary that we and they can use for awareness- and fundraising efforts to support TYO’s ongoing work in Nablus and beyond!

With over a dozen additional bodies joining us at the TYO Center, we are preparing for a full house – full-time staff may be relegated to camping under the stars on our panoramic terrace! In the meantime, our outreach specialist, Futoon Qadri, is busy recruiting over 500 children and community members that will be get the chance to take part in TYO summer programs, including our ongoing core program and the fascinating programs to be led by the interns!