29 MAY 2017: The Travel Agent Next Door raised almost $12,000 for Pencils for Kids, its main charity partner, through various initiatives involving agents and their clients, with TTAND contributing $3,000 -and RCI and NCL each donated as well.  

“We believe it is very important to give back at The Travel Agent Next Door,” said Flemming Friisdahl, founder. “We were inspired by Robin Mednick, president and executive director of Pencils for Kids, last year at our 2016 conference where she was the keynote speaker and we have since adopted Pencils for Kids as our main charity partner.”

Mednick said the host agency’s generous and enthusiastic support has meant the world to Pencils for Kids - enabling the charity to make a significant impact on the lives of women and children in Libore, Niger.

She said, “Ray Bradbury, the science fiction writer once said, ‘Walk to the edge of the cliff, jump off, and build your wings on the way down’. TTAND has lifted our wings and helped us soar and Pencils for Kids is blessed to have TTAND in its corner."

Pencils for Kids started in the fall of 2005 when Canadian athletes participated in the "The Games of La Francophonie” in Niger, West Africa. During the Games a group of athletes, including one of the photographers for the Canadian Team, visited a school in Liboré, a rural area outside Niamey, the capital of Niger, which is considered the poorest country in the world. What they saw shocked them. Thirty children in one classroom were sharing ONE pencil. There were few books and fewer supplies, no electricity and no running water.

Dan Galbraith, well known photographer and videographer who attends many travel industry conferences, was very troubled by what they had seen in Niger. So he and Robin Mednick decided to do something about it. With help from others, they started Pencils for Kids.

Today, Pencils for Kids has developed a two part approach. First they work with the community to directly fund education-related projects like schools, scholarships for girls, sewing centres, or programmes like Farmers of the Future. Second they approach organizations that have expertise in other areas beyond education, like sport and health, and invite them to bring their talents to the same community. Visit www.pencilsforkids.com to learn more about all of the incredible programs and how to contribute.

The Travel Agent Next Door just launched a web page and will continue fund-raising efforts on behalf of the charity.

 

 

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