Picking ripe coffee beans, planting fields of corn and engaging in various reforestation projects around the farm were the ways that a led2serve team served locally at Arenal Vida Campesina in La Fortuna, Alajuela, Costa Rica. These students worked together in three groups to learn and cultivate new skills and enjoy fellowship with one another. The purpose of this serving day was to provide these students with a hands-on learning experience of a typical day for employees on the farm. This service learning project gave the students the opportunity to engage in community and environmental sustainability education during their month-long stay in Costa Rica.
With led2serve’s mission to build relationships within the communities they serve, Arenal Vida Campesina has been a partner location for led2serve over the past five years. Arenal Vida Campesina is a self-sustained, organic and cultural education center that strives to share the true life of a rural Costa Rican family and preserve the customs and traditions of Costa Rica.
The team was educated about the importance of producing crops in sustainable form and how to integrate with the local community to provide what is necessary. With an afternoon full of service, students gained firsthand knowledge on how a family-owned farm strives to survive and develop for future years. “I really enjoyed serving and interacting with members of the local community during our service project,” Mary Beth McWhirt said. “It was great to learn firsthand how an organic farm operates and runs on a daily basis in Costa Rica.”
Linking academic outcomes with intentional service provides one of the richest forms of learning for today's students. Kansas Wesleyan University introduced The Center for Global Service Learning in partnership with led2serveU in the fall of 2014. This on-campus office is excited to provide a guaranteed Service Learning experience to all qualified students wo have attended KWU for at least 4 semesters. The "Wesleyan Journey" will be a course that every student will want to take.
The Center for Global Service Learning will collaborate with faculty to customize dynamic courses that support established community partners around the world. Innovative internship opportunities, vibrant learning experiences domestic and abroad, and meaningful, life-changing service projects are the hallmark of The Center for Global Service Learning.
The Center has a robust resource area both in-house and online. These resources are for students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends of KWU. Also, transient faculty and transient students may participate in the near future! Ongoing workshops are designed to address any potential questions faculty and students may have along with preparing them for their Journey.
led2play is an amazing Service Learning Journey that combines your servant heart with the inner child that we all have. From our younger days, we have wondered if play could be a vehicle that could make a lasting impact in the lives of other people. It can and it does! It is the purest form of serving. The smiles, the stories, the friendships, the meals afterwards; some of our most favorite moments come from being led2play with someone else. Give a little, play a little, play it forward...
World-renowned soccer player, Jackie Bachteler, partnered with Co-founder, Nancy Cummings, to create meaningful Service Journeys combining sport, play and service activies.
Jackie adds passion and purpose to her sport. She is a trainer, coach, mentor and friend to children and students across the globe. Bridging her playing style with her teaching technique, she has created the "soccer dance" and has elevated soccer to a brand new level. Having competed as a professional player in the U.S., Sweden, and Finland, Jackie has enriched the lives of countless people all around the world.
led2serve understands what it takes to create curriculum that allows colleges, professors, teachers, and most importantly students, to thrive in today's academic world while maintaining robust curriculum. Dr. Nancy H. Cummings, Co-founder of led2serve, states it best. "Today’s students want to learn, serve and help others. They are hungry to make a difference in the world. It is up to us, as educators, to meet their needs and design moments that intentionally bridge the gap between serving and learning. Service Learning produces well-rounded, caring, global citizens that will make a profound difference in their communities, their profession and around the world." She created a new division of the organization in 2013 which will focus exclusively on customizing Service Learning Journeys for all academic environments. Whether you are interested in a Service Learning Journey for your students or simply have an interest in learning while you serve, led2serveU will create an amazing life-changing Journey that you can join. THESE are examples of future Service Learning Journeys.
Watch for more details to come!