A Word from our Founder
Hello friends and family,
I am writing to you today to share some exciting news! As you may be aware, I’ve been involved with sustainable travel initiatives for a number of years now. Sustainable travel is an area of interest where all my passions meet – travel, education, social justice, animal protection, environmental sustainability, linguistic and cultural exchanges, and social change. Personal obsessions aside, sustainable travel is also the solution to the most pressing issues faced by our planet and all beings that depend on it.
Before COVID-19 brought travel to a standstill, unsustainable tourism practices and over-tourism were placing strain on local communities, economies and ecosystems around the world. Despite all the devastating challenges that have come with the pandemic, I believe this unintended pause is the best time for us to reset and reimagine travel and work together towards a regenerative future.
I am pleased to share with you that this year, I founded RISE Travel Institute as a birthday gift to myself. RISE is now a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit and our mission is to inspire responsible, impactful, sustainable and ethical travel through education. Our pilot program, scheduled to launch in Spring 2021, will be a research-based curriculum structured around the most important topics within the scope of travel through an anti-oppression lens. Our certificate and micro-credential courses will aim to empower young travelers and the future members of the travel industry workforce to understand and experience travel in a way that respects and creates a positive impact on the people, animals, and environment of travel destinations. In addition, when international travel safely returns, we will invite students of the program on an inaugural sustainable journey where everything they have learned will be put into practice. (Tentatively in Winter 2022.) As funding provides, we will also award need-based scholarships to enable students from underrepresented or disadvantaged backgrounds to join our inaugural trip.
Over the past few months, we have built an exceptional founding team. With the expertise, connections, and passion of our Board Directors, Senior Advisors and volunteers, we are poised and ready to raise awareness about sustainable and regenerative travel on the world’s university campuses and beyond.
As we take the next steps to officially launch RISE, I would like to invite you to join our cause by making a monthly financial gift. Monthly donations will be crucial in building the backbone of our organization, setting us up for success in bringing free programs to our students. With as little as $20 USD per month, you can join our cause and help to ensure we have the means to accomplish our mission. Simply put, the more support we receive from you, the more students will be able to study and travel with us for free, catalyzing their potential to create sustainable impact.
I sincerely hope you’ll join me on this meaningful journey as a monthly donor. One-time gifts will certainly be appreciated as well. You can donate online here, or mail your check to 770 River Road #381, Edgewater, NJ, USA. Please also join our mailing list, follow us on social media and help us grow our audience. Feel free to reach out to me with any questions about RISE and our plans for the future. And thank you in advance for your contributions!
With much love,