Community Impact

GLA Celebrates #GivingTuesday

Give back in a meaningful way to communities and organizations that do good by the world

Tuesday, December 1st

This #GivingTuesday, Global Leadership Adventures is proud to feature alumni and partner organizations that are giving back to communities in need, every summer and all year-round.

If you're feeling in the giving spirit this holiday season, we encourage you to read about the incredible organizations below, and consider contributing to a cause that speaks to your heart and mind. When we talk about 'being the change' here at GLA, we know it means every single day, but we also believe it's important to highlight organizations that do meaningful work when the opportunity arises.

Filters for Families

Dominican Republic

"My GLA trip completely changed the course of my life. I have not only found a major and career path thanks to my experiences in the DR, but I have found a passion.”

GLA alum Sarah Stubbs has distributed 524 filters since beginning her water filter initiative in the Dominican Republic. And in the summer of 2015 alone, she reports that students have raised over $8,000 for filters, thanks to their passion for drinking water issues. She is currently designing a study with Filters for Families that will compare drinking water samples to the health status of members of the local community. The data collected will have an impact by helping others with their own initiatives to improve access to clean drinking water elsewhere.

→ If you'd like to donate to Filters for Families, you can do so here.

The Q'ewar Project


Students on GLA's Peru: Spanish Service Adventure program will already be familiar with the Q'Ewar Project. Based in Andahuaylillas, Peru, this initiative promotes social and economic facility amongst indigenous women of the Quechua Community. Typically mired in pervasive poverty, these women are enabled by the project to learn the skills necessary to earn money in a humane and respectful way.

The goal of the Q'ewar Project is to sell the locally crafted dolls made by these women to support their livelihoods. Participants in the project wash, card and spin wool that they utilize in making the sweaters, shoes and hair for these distinctive dolls. They also contribute hand dyed fibers for hats and ponchos that adorn the dolls. They make an amazing gift, and you're contributing to the common good in the process.

→ If you'd like to donate to the Q'ewar Project, you can do so here.

Forjando Alas of Uvita

Costa Rica

The coastal town of Uvita is growing dramatically, and while the influx of tourism generates opportunities for locals, it can also instigate problems.

Local kids often drop out of school early and begin work at a young age, and these conditions often lead to abuse or neglect at home. Forjando Alas - or Building Wings in English - is a childrens' center in town that provides a safe environment for kids to gain life skills, build self-esteem, and receive psychological help for them and thier mothers.

This organization is looking to raise funds to help build an educational playground, gardens, and other essential components to expand their outreach.

→ If you'd like to donate to Forjando Alas of Uvita, you can do so here.

Tong Len Scholarship Fund


As GLA alum and former GLA Ambassador of the Year Max Bone wrote on the Go Fund Me page for this scholarship, "Schooling is expensive, but education is priceless. You can change a child from the slums' life by donating today."

For students from GLA's India: Service in the Himalayas program who are raising funds for one student to attend school, one education isn't enough, but it is meaningful. It matters. It makes a difference. The funds they're raising aren't just for a semester or a year either. They're for one local student to attend the Tong Len hostel school for 12 whole years - enough to complete schooling.

Tong Len offers a safe and suitable envirionment for students to focus on their academic success by removing the daily struggles that kids in the slum face. Once enough funds are raised, this child will be able to leave the slum and break out of the cycle of poverty.

→ If you'd like to donate to the Tong Len Scholarship Fund, you can do so here.

African Leadership Foundation

South Africa

Last, but certainly not least on our Giving Tuesday list, is the African Leadership Foundation. This non-profit's mission is to support "transformative change in Africa by developing and connecting the continent's next generation of leaders."

The Foundation helps fund the African Leadership Academy, which was co-founded in 2004 by two of GLA's founders: Fred Swaniker and Peter Mombaur. Swaniker conceived of the idea for Global Leadership Adventures while developing the concept for the African Leadership Academy - so every GLA student owes a part of his/her own experience to ALA. Students graduating from Academy will collaborate together to address the challenges facing the African continent, work to achieve extraordinary social impact, and contribute to the continent’s growth.

→ If you'd like to donate to the African Leadership Foundation, you can do so here.

Giving Beyond #GivingTuesday

And if there's someone you'd like to get into the act of giving back beyond the holidays, we encourage you to check out our service learning adventures™ for summer 2016 (you might even be inspired to make one an under-the-tree surprise with a GLA holiday gift box.