Published September 11, 2011 in the Travel Section of the San Francisco Chronicle.
On the surface, it's a booklet of mostly blank, sickly colored pages, covered in cheap vinyl, in which the only contents are dull details, blurry ink smudges and just one photograph - usually a bad one.
But to Tracey Friley, that booklet can change a young girl's life. Maybe the world.
"I hope that by girls getting their first passports, they view themselves and their place in the world in a whole new way," said Friley, founder of the Passport Party Project, a campaign of "gifting" girls 11 to 16 years old with their first passports. The project is holding events around the country (including in San Francisco in March 2013) to raise awareness about passports and travel, and to raise money for application fees for girls in each city to receive passports. She held a pilot event in Oakland in June.
"I hope they continue to learn and teach tolerance of other cultures both at home and abroad," she said. "I hope they see the change that is needed in the world and then consider how they might help."
Read more here.