Friendship Force of Lake Hartwell meet on Monday of each month at 6:30PM located at Sacred Heart Catholic Church Founders Hall, 1009 Benson Street Hartwell, Ga. 30643
I Can Make a Difference
By Dave Leverette
That?s what we pledge at every meeting. I?d like to describe a few instances when I believe a Friendship Force experience did that. And that will make my case for urging us to aggressively seek the Indonesian Student program.
Mary Lou and I attended the FF King Arthur Festival in England several years ago. It was a wonderful event, but the most poignant memory is two young Korean girls, probably ten or twelve years old, who were in tears when we all said goodbye. I believe they will carry a positive impression of the English, Australians, Americans, and all the others who were there. They will remember foreigners as good people. We probably made a difference.
Several years ago Paula and Pete were the Exchange Directors for a South African group. Their ages ranged from an elderly gentleman (who loved to sing and dance) to several teenagers. They were terrified when they discovered that they were to stay with white people. One even gave Carol Ford all her money because she knew it would be stolen. Ask Carol about her response! They left with a different opinion on how things can be. I think we made a difference.
Dave Pursell headed our Open World Project. We put on a week long series of seminars on economic development for promising up-and-coming Russian entrepreneurs. It was exhausting. But those young Russians were so enthusiastic and so surprised to find that we can and do operate in an open and relatively corrupt free business environment (as compared to theirs). I think they left with a different appreciation for free enterprise. I hope we made a difference.
Our club hosted, on short notice, a group of English teachers from Indonesia. They came expecting to find a ?super power? inhabited by Michael Jackson clones, who all lived in apartments in large cities, and were involved in their third or fourth marriages. They believed we practiced apartheid. They were shocked to find out that we live in country settings, that we cherish our families, and that in many ways ?we?re just like them?. I?m sure they are giving their students a more realistic view of the USA. Now one of them wants to return to show her students what she saw. I know we made a difference.
The common theme in the above experiences is that they involved young people. They have their life ahead of them and they may be able to use their experiences in ways that we can not even imagine. When they do, we will have made a difference.
That?s why I firmly believe that we need aggressively pursue Indonesian Student Exchange!
2017 Board Members
President: Bill Schafer
Vice President: Richard Brister
Treasurer: Marti Reckdenwald
Secretary: Merilee Brister
Web Coordinator.. Tom Christman
Publicity South Carolina....
Sunshine....Mary Lou Leverette
Calgary, Alberta - June 19-25
Montreal - September
Raleigh, NC - May 1-5
Want to know what you may see or learn from exchanges? Well just take a photo journey of the wonderful times shared with various clubs throughout the world. (click here and view the slide show).
Previous Exchanges by FFOLH:
Incoming from Niagara, Canada
Incoming from Cheyenne, Wyoming
Incoming from Santa Barbara, California
Incoming Baku, Azerbaijan Teachers visit
Incoming from Sydney, Australia.
Incoming Auckland, New Zealand.
Mini Exchange to Knoxville.
Outgoing to Great Falls Montana
Outgoing to Cornwall & New Castle, England
Outgoing to Curitiba and Belo Horizonte, Brazil.
Outgoing NAPA CA and SACRAMENTO.
And many many more.
Friendship Force Pledge
Members of the Friendship Force subscribe to the following pledge:
As a member of The Friendship Force,
I recognise that I have a mission.
I recognise that I can make a difference
That mission is to be a friend to the people of the world.
As I embark on this adventure,
I know that others will be watching me.
I know that through my example to my fellow citizens
and the people of other nations,
the cause of friendship, love and peace can be furthered
I can make a difference!