Disenchanted with this statistic, on June 4, 2011, award-winning travel writer and travel-preneur Tracey Friley grabbed some local kids in the San Francisco Bay Area and, after spending the day with them talking travel, gave them the money for their very first passports. In spite of her excitement, there was no way that Tracey would have guessed that this day of travel fun would turn into a nationwide initiative's pilot event.
THE HEARTFELT PITCH
Less than two weeks later, Tracey found herself in the midst of an unexpected yet heartfelt pitch at TBEX 2011. The explosive audience response inspired Tracey to return home with plans to take her passport party on the road. With no definitive plan about how she was going to raise money, Friley did a bit of fundraising and dug a little deeper in her pockets and The Passport Party Project was born with what has since become Phase 1: An 18 month global awareness campaign starting in Los Angeles on Saturday, September 24, 2011.
Three months after TBEX, Expedia's then Director of Global Public Relations Adam Anderson contacted Tracey and offered to fund The Passport Party Project in its entirety. His enthusiasm was electric. After several months of exciting negotiations, the contract was signed and the public announcement hit the press: A Passport to the World: Expedia and The Passport Party Project Help Teen Girls Obtain First Passport.
WHERE WE ARE TODAY
Fully funded by the world's largest online travel company - Expedia® - The Passport Party Project was able to successfully gift 100 underserved girls with their very first passports during a nationwide traveling campaign that wraps up in July 2013 with a trip to Belize, Central America for six lucky girls that will get their very first passport stamps.
Phase 2, a more improved version of Phase 1, will get underway once funding has been secured. You can help.