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Sunday, June 17, 2012


Empowering Youth Through Travel participant Yael (and her mom) getting ready for the big trip!

When I reached out to Jessica Mann last year about partnering with The Passport Party Project once it made its way to Chicago, we talked candidly about how challenging non-profit work can be.  We also talked about how giving up is not an option.  I remember our conversation like it was yesterday.

Dushun shows off his first passport as he gears up for Costa Rica!

Jessica Mann
Jessica is the founder of Empowering Youth Through Travel, a small non-profit in Chicago whose mission is to empower urban teens of color from disadvantaged backgrounds, through hands-on learning of current, worldly issues. On June 20, 2012, four teens - one of which has never been on a plane and who just got his first passport - will travel to Costa Rica for an adventure of a lifetime.  You can read more about the trip here.  And you can read more about Jessica here.

Chris (and his mom) show off his ready-to-go-to-Costa-Rica passport...
Jessica is DOING it.  She's not merely thinking about it or talking about it; she's DOING the doggone thing.  And that, ladies and gentlemen, deserves a #StandingOvation in my book.  *Wild applause*

Jessica Mann ‎***BIG HUGS*** thank you so much for ALL the LOVE and SUPPORT, you're the BEST!! Thank you for being such an inspiration as well :D #Grateful for the #Blessings
Yesterday at 11:11am via mobile · · 1
  • Tracey Friley I remember our talk, Jessica, and THIS (the upcoming youth trip to Costa Rica) is why quitting is not an option. XOX
    Yesterday at 11:13am · · 1

  • Jessica Mann Yes!!!! I remember, and I have not forgotten your words of advice ;) THIS MOMENT alone motivates me to keep pushing forward :D
    Yesterday at 11:30am via mobile · · 1

  • Tracey Friley ‎#standingovation
    Yesterday at 11:37am · · 1