Feed on
Posts
Comments

Facundo

En Facundo por Sarmiento, él proporciona una descripción breve de los gauchos y su estilo de vida, pero al mismo tiempo critica al líder de Argentina, Rosas, quien tiene su origen en los gauchos. En las paginas 274-276, él utiliza repetición para comunicar las ‘atrocidades’ de Rosas. En cada párrafo, él comienza con ‘Porque el… haeste estilo es muy directa y específicamente menciona ‘él’ o Rosas en cada ejemplo. Como resultado, no hay duda sobre quien es el líder de los actos horribles o barbaros. En adición, él uso el presente perfecto para comunicar que mientras los actos están en el pasado, están reciente. Además, no utiliza el pretérito lo que indicaría que no solo los eventos están en el pasado, sino también no pueden cambiar.

Los tópicos que Sarmiento discute en las paginas 274-276 contienen los temas similares a las otras lecturas pasadas. Específicamente, él menciona la necesidad de educación. El párrafo en pagina 275 donde discute la importancia de educación publica me interesa porque ambos Sor Juana y las Casas mencionan la importancia de educación para mejorar una sociedad. Similar a los otros párrafos en esta sección, él utiliza la comparación del titulo, Civilización o barbarie para mostrar la importancia de cada acción. En adición, él iguala los países de Europa a civilización y educación, similar a Sor Juana cuando ella utiliza los ejemplos de Europa para demonstrar su conocimiento. Mientas solamente menciono un párrafo, los otros son similares y contienen un forma similar. La estructura y repetición de la frase en cada párrafo fortalecen el propósito del autor.

Reblogged from: ENGAGE – Wesleyan University. (Go to the original post…)

The Allbritton Center is the hub of civic engagement at Wesleyan.  We study public life, actively partner with the local and regional community, and teach practical skills for social impact.

In the wake of the historic 2016 presidential election, we believe that civic engagement — in its many forms — is more important than ever. To that end, we will maintain this calendar of campus and community events related to the election, its aftermath, and movements forward.

We will cross-post events that we find elsewhere, and we urge you to contact us if you have any to add. We are committed to transparency, open discourse, and the safety and well-being of all our community members. We hope to post all events that we learn about, but we reserve the right to screen accordingly.

Bolded events are those held on Wesleyan’s campus; inclusion of an event does not equal endorsement.

(This is an updated version of our “Responding to the 2016 Presidential Election” page; that page will no longer be updated).

Last updated: 2/20/17 at 2:52 pm

Upcoming events

Event Date Time, Location Audience
Planned Parenthood Reproductive Freedom Training 2/20 5:30-8:00 pm, 345 Whitney Ave., New Haven Open to anyone
March for Science (New Haven, CT) 2/22 5:30 pm, New Haven green Open to anyone
Be the Art Showcase Opening Reception 2/23 4:00-7:00 pm, Zilkha Gallery Open to anyone
Climate Change and Public Policy: Saving the Earth at the State and Local Level (with VT Governor Peter Shumlin ’79) 2/23 7:00 pm, Judd 116 Open to anyone
Philosophy and Mass Incarceration Conference 2/24-2/26 Whitney Humanities Center Auditorium (Yale campus) Open to anyone; currently sold out, but check back about live-stream
Anti-Pipeline Phone Banking! 2/26 4:00-6:00 pm, Woodhead Lounge Open to anyone
Patrisse Cullors, Co-Founder, #BlackLivesMatter 2/28 7:00-8:30 pm, Conn College Open to anyone; seating is limited

Humanitarian Challenges Today: Migrants, Refugees, and the International Community with Mark Storella

3/2 8:00 pm, PAC 001 Open to anyone
Race, Refugees, and the Present Crisis 3/8 4:15-6:15, Trinity College Mather Hall Open to anyone
Implicit Bias in Preschools: Dr. Walter Gilliam 3/9 (rescheduled from 2/9) 9:00-10:15 am, deKoven House (27 Washington St., Middletown) Open to anyone
Nasty Women Connecticut Art Exhibition 3/9 6:00-8:00 pm, The Institute Library (New Haven) Open to anyone; submit work here
Election 2016: The Role of Identity Politics 3/29  4:30 pm, PAC 001 Open to anyone

— 

Past events

Event Date Time, Location Audience
Greg Cava Day of Action – Take Back the Senate 2/18 11:00 am-6:00 pm, 667 Main Street, Watertown, CT Open to anyone
Defying Racism Workshop 2/18 10:30 am-2:30 pm, Russell Library (Middletown) Open to anyone, drop-ins welcome
Planned Parenthood Organizing Training 2/18 10:00 am-2:00 pm, 345 Whitney Ave., New Haven Open to anyone
Rebellious Lawyering Conference 2017 2/17 and 2/18 Yale Law School Open to anyone; tickets available ($35, free for CT University students)
Tell CT GOP Leaders Enough is Enough (over coffee) 2/17 8:00-9:00 am, Valley Diner Restaurant (Derby, CT) Open to anyone
Stories of a New America: A Staged Reading 2/16, 2/17, and 2/18 8:00-10:00 pm, Collective Consciousness Theatre (New Haven) Open to anyone; tickets available ($20 adult, $10 student)
Resisting Deportations: A Workshop for Allies 2/15 7:00-9:00 pm, 37 Howe St., New Haven Open to anyone
Phone banking for Dorina Borer’s special election 2/14  5:00-8:00 pm, 413 Campbell Ave., West Haven  Open to anyone
Valentine’s Day #NoDAPL Action in New Haven 2/14 4:30-5:30 pm, TD Bank (New Haven) Open to anyone
CallToAction: Critical Time to Call 2/13 11:00 am-2:00 pm, Usdan 108 Open to anyone; phone numbers and scripts provided
Rally, March, and Action Meeting to Protect Planned Parenthood 2/11 1:00-5:00 pm, Elmwood Community Center (West Hartford) Open to anyone; registration (free) is encouraged
Black Business Day 2/9 and 2/16 Lunch, Usdan first floor Open to anyone
Weiner Screening with Wesleyan Democrats! 2/9 7:30-10:00 pm, 126 A Knowles Ave. Open to anyone
Fight 4 Reproductive Rights – February Meeting of CT NOW 2/9 6:00-8:00 pm, New Haven Free Public Library Open to anyone
Planned Parenthood GenAction Period Drive 2/7-2/11 Boxes for menstrual products located in Olin, Exley, Usdan, and Weshop Open to anyone; donate on venmo to @Rachele-Merliss
Ride for Resistance: Standing Rock Comes to Hartford 2/6 7:00 pm, Unitarian Society of Hartford Open to anyone; WesDivest is coordinating carpools
WesACLU: First Meeting of the Semester! 2/6 7:00 pm, 200 Church Open to anyone
ACLU Bake Sale Fundraiser! 2/6 7:00-10:00 pm, Exley Lobby Open to anyone
Sanctuary City for Bridgeport at City Hall 2/6 6:00-8:00 pm, Bridgeport City Hall Open to anyone
#CallToAction: Second Semester 2/6 11:00 am-2:00 pm, Beckham Hall Open to anyone; scripts and phone numbers provided
March for Refugees After Run for Refugees 2/5 12:00-3:00 pm, Wilbur Cross High School to New Haven Green Open to anyone
IRIS Run for Refugees – Wesleyan Team 2/5 10:00 am, Wilbur Cross High School (New Haven) Open to anyone
No Ban No Wall! – New Haven 2/4 3:00-6:00 pm, New Haven City Hall and County Courthouse Open to anyone
MLK Commemoration: Freedom is a Constant Struggle 2/3 12:15-1:15 pm, Memorial Chapel (reception to follow in Zelnick Pavilion) Open to anyone

Come Create: Art and Reproductive Justice

2/2  4:30-6:00 pm, The Workshop (Hewitt 8)  Open to anyone 
Refugee Advocacy Training with IRAP and CAIR 2/1 6:00-8:00 pm, Usdan 110 Open to anyone 
West Hartford Rally for Immigrant and Refugee Rights 2/1 4:30-6:00 pm, Town Hall (50 South Main Street, West Hartford) Open to anyone
Carbs for a Cause: ACLU + Hartford Baking Co. 2/1 7:30 am-5:30 pm, 625 New Park Ave., West Hartford Open to anyone
Reject DAPL 1/27  4:30-5:30 pm, CT State Capital (Hartford)  Open to anyone; hosted by Jennifer Roach ’14, past Civic Engagement Fellow!
Town Hall Meeting with State Senator Len Suzio (R) 1/25 6:00-7:30 pm, Russell Library  Open to anyone
Women’s March on Washington- National Page 1/21  10:00 am-5:00 pm, Lincoln Memorial, Washington DC Open to anyone 
Not My President 1/20 all day, U.S. Capitol Building Open to anyone 
Women Strike Out and Protest 12/12/16 12:00-2:00 pm, New Haven Green  Open to anyone

Bridges, Not Walls
Trump Presidency: Legal Perspectives

12/6/16  5:30 pm, Daniel Family Commons (light supper) Open to anyone

The Future of Foreign Policy

12/5/16  7:00 pm, Judd 116 Open to anyone 

Gov Dept./Wes Media Project Post-Election Conference

12/4-12/5/16  8:00 pm (12/4) in PAC 001, 9:00 am-4:00 pm (12/5) in Allbritton 311  Open to anyone; agenda available 

Unity Rally

11/30/16  5:00-7:00 pm, 425 College Street, New Haven Open to anyone 

Group Discussion on the 2016 Election & its Aftermath

11/28/16  6:30-8:30 pm, Neighborhood Housing Services of New Haven (333 Sherman Ave.) Open to anyone 

Anti-Trump Rally

11/25/16 5:00-7:00 pm, New Haven Green  Open to anyone 

Donations for Standing Rock

through 11/22/16  Outside of Weshop  Open to anyone; food and cash donations accepted

What’s Next: an open town hall about campus organizing

11/21/16  Daniel Family Commons Open to students 

“I Alone Can Fix This”: The Global Surge of Populist Authoritarianism (forum sponsored by the History Dept.)

11/21/16  4:30 pm, Judd 116  Open to the Wesleyan community  

United Against Hate – March of Resilience

11/21/16  3:30-6:00 pm, US Court House (450 Main Street, Hartford, CT)  Open to anyone 

Call to Action: Phone Bank Campaign

11/21/16  11:00 am-2:00 pm, Woodhead Lounge Open to anyone (numbers, scripts, and food provided) 

A Leftist Response to Trump Teach-In

11/20/16  3:30-5:00 pm, Woodhead Lounge  Open to anyone 

Community Organizing Conference

11/19/16  11:00 am-3:00 pm, Bridgeport Public Library (Bridgeport, CT)  Open to anyone; register online (agenda also available) 

Anti-Trump March and Demo

11/18/16  6:00-8:00 pm, Downtown New Haven on the Green  Open to anyone

Music Shabbat! Love Shabbat! 

11/18/16  5:00-7:00 pm, The Bayit Open to anyone 

A Common Moment for an Uncommon Time: Connecting body, spirit and well-being

11/18/16 4:00 pm, CFA Courtyard (by the Davison Art Center fountain) Open to anyone 
Jummah on the Green (prayer service and solidarity event) 11/18/16 1:00-1:30 pm, Huss Courtyard (outside Usdan) Open to anyone
The Trump Presidency and International Students: A Conversation 11/17/16  6:30-8:30 pm, Allbritton 311 Open to anyone; please RSVP to moreyes@wesleyan.edu
Your Call to Action: Info Session on Wesleyan’s Phone Bank 11/17/16 4:30-5:30 pm, location TBA Open to students
Classroom, office & campus experiences and strategies  11/17/16  12:00 pm, Woodhead Lounge  Open to faculty only
Westco Open Mic: Open Vent 11/16/16 8:00-11:00 pm, Westco Lounge Open to anyone
Post-Election Climate Dialogue 11/16/16  6:30-8:00 pm, Exley 150 Open to anyone
New Haven Stands with Standing Rock at TD Bank 11/16/16 4:30-6:00 pm, 994 Chapel Street, New Haven  Open to anyone
Wesleyan National Walk-Out for #SanctuaryCampus 11/16/16  3:00-4:00 pm, petition to be read in Usdan Open to anyone
Discussion with students involved at Allbritton 11/16/16 11:50 am-1:10 pm, Allbritton 311 Students involved at Allbritton (Alls) and their guests
We’ll Be Watching (sign making and photo campaign)

11/15/16 

11:00 am-2:00 pm, Usdan Open to anyone 
Mass Meeting: Showing Up Against Hate in a Post Trump World 11/15/16 6:00-8:00 pm, Unitarian Society of Hartford (Hartford, CT) Open to anyone 
Sociology Majors pizza lunch & discussion 11/15/16 12:00-1:00 pm, PAC 421 Sociology majors only

La Falsa Esperanza

Empezando con el surgimiento de Rosas como el hombre más poderoso del Argentina, es evidente que los gauchos, pero también las otras razas y tipo de gente que no pertenecen a la clase alta, tenían que enfrentar a mucha discriminación.
Lo que me interesa de esta época en Argentina y a través de esto las lecturas de Lynch y Sarmiento es que los dos lados de pensamiento que existían, el federalismo y el unitarismo, fueron totalmente diferente además del racismo y negación de las clases inferiores.
Por un lado, Rosas tuvo éxito en ganar el apoyo de gauchos y algunos indios, intentando mostrar que la aristocracia no dirige el país. Rosas si logró dar más derechos a todos los hombres con el sufragio de hombres, pero este sistema fue un fraude porque fue un voto verbal y también mucha gente todavía fue excluida. Aunque muchos peones y gauchos formaron milicias a favor de la causa de Rosas, no necesariamente recibieron más poder o representación política. Lynch nos muestra que Rosas aprovechó este tipo de gente para su propio ganancia de poder, riqueza, y influencia, y cuando logró el poder, empezó a matar a sus opositores políticas.
Por otro lado, Sarmiento discute el campesino argentino, y intenta encontrar una manera de orden en el país de Argentina. A través de esto, se define el gaucho como asesinos. Cree que hay una cuestiona en la manera en que operan los gauchos y otros pueblos pastores. Una cita específica subraya las creencias de Sarmiento, “Había, antes de 1810 …dos civilizaciones diversas: la una, española, europea, culta, y la otra, bárbara, americana, casi indígena…” (69). Cree que sólo la inmigración europea puede salvar al país y establecer un elemento de orden. Es una perspectiva muy fuerte, y nos muestra que Sarmiento representa un cuerpo de intelectuales populares que comparten opiniones racistas y desiguales.

Así que, el gaucho y los otros grupos inferiores de la época se encuentran en una situación difícil, con represión indirecto con Rosas, y represión directo con Sarmiento y sus compañeros.

Reblogged from: Wesconnect News. (Go to the original post…)

By Keren Alshanetsky ’17

[Kate Ballen ’75]Kate Ballen ’75 co-wrote and co-produced the film, From Nowhere, which follows three undocumented teenagers in the Bronx as they work to graduate high school while simultaneously applying for asylum. It premiered this past Friday, February 17th at select theaters and is currently screening at Village East Cinema in New York.

Based loosely on a play by Ballen, From Nowhere received wide critical acclaim in the year leading up to its North American release. In 2016, the film won the Narrative Spotlight Audience Award at SXSW and received the Audience Award for Best American Independent Film at the Champs-Élysées Film Festival. It is lauded for its dynamic handling of an increasingly relevant and urgent issue:

From Nowhere largely avoids preachiness and sanctimony, preferring to wrestle with the real world in all its stubborn complexity . . . Screenwriters Matthew Newton (who also directed) and Kate Ballen have no interest in creating cartoon villains, but they likewise refrain from creating plaster saints: Two cops who choose to ignore Moussa’s fake ID seem as motivated by their desire to avoid paperwork and get out of the cold as by kindness or empathy, and a landlord who refuses to take a family’s last penny, because he can’t bear to think of them going hungry, nonetheless still threatens to evict them soon if their back rent isn’t fully paid.

Buy tickets for a screening of From Nowhere at the Village East Cinema in New York City here.

Read more…

Image: c/o Kate Ballen

Share this link: wesconnect.wesleyan.edu/news-20170218-kate-ballen

Related links

[Facebook]Add Kate Ballen on Facebook ➞

Don’t have a Facebook account, but want to comment? Email us.

Reblogged from: Wesconnect News. (Go to the original post…)

By Keren Alshanetsky ’17

[Kate Ballen ’75]Kate Ballen ’75 co-wrote and co-produced the film, From Nowhere, which follows three undocumented teenagers in the Bronx as they work to graduate high school while simultaneously applying for asylum. It premiered this past Friday, February 17th at select theaters and is currently screening at Village East Cinema in New York.

Based loosely on a play by Ballen, From Nowhere received wide critical acclaim in the year leading up to its North American release. In 2016, the film won the Narrative Spotlight Audience Award at SXSW and received the Audience Award for Best American Independent Film at the Champs-Élysées Film Festival. It is lauded for its dynamic handling of an increasingly relevant and urgent issue:

From Nowhere largely avoids preachiness and sanctimony, preferring to wrestle with the real world in all its stubborn complexity . . . Screenwriters Matthew Newton (who also directed) and Kate Ballen have no interest in creating cartoon villains, but they likewise refrain from creating plaster saints: Two cops who choose to ignore Moussa’s fake ID seem as motivated by their desire to avoid paperwork and get out of the cold as by kindness or empathy, and a landlord who refuses to take a family’s last penny, because he can’t bear to think of them going hungry, nonetheless still threatens to evict them soon if their back rent isn’t fully paid.

Buy tickets for a screening of From Nowhere at the Village East Cinema in New York City here.

Read more…

Image: c/o Kate Ballen

Share this link: wesconnect.wesleyan.edu/news-20170218-kate-ballen

Related links

[Facebook]Add Kate Ballen on Facebook ➞

Don’t have a Facebook account, but want to comment? Email us.

Reblogged from: Wesconnect News. (Go to the original post…)

By Keren Alshanetsky ’17

[Julie Yannatta ’91]Management Executive Julie Yannatta ’91, the president of entertainment branding company and record label Be Why, recently celebrated the label’s first Grammy win.

Management Executive Julie Yannatta ’91, the president of entertainment branding company and record label Be Why, recently celebrated the label’s first Grammy win.

White Sun, a trio based in Santa Monica which is signed to the young company, bested a competitive field of artists to take home the Grammy for Best New Age album last Sunday for their album, White Sun II:

“White Sun II,” which features Grammy-winning kora player Mamadou Diabate, the Punch Brothers’ violinist Gabe Witcher and tabla player Abhiman Kaushal, was a breakout New Age hit in 2016, where it was a top-charter.

This is a huge victory for Be Why, which Yannatta founded in 2010 after a long, varied career spanning law, music, software and music entrepreneurship. As an undergraduate she majored in government and the Science in Society program, which helped provide her with the foundation to pursue a wide range of work opportunities. Some of her most recent positions include a stint as General Manager of the Shangri-La Music team, where she worked alongside music industry veteran Jeff Ayeroff to release albums by alternative and legacy artists. She later joined Ayeroff to executive produce Chimes of Freedom, a charity compilation album celebrating Amnesty International’s 50th anniversary. Now, as head of Be Why, she is reaping the benefits of these diverse experiences.

Accepting the trophy at the 59th Grammy ceremony, White Sun’s lead singer and songwriter Gurujas explained the significance of the victory:

“We just want our music to make something better for somebody somewhere. And it’s our dream to see this world become a more beautiful place. For anyone who shares in that dream with us, thank you, we love you and let’s do better.”

En el inicio de la colonización, los colonos tienen un necesidad de los reyes en España para ayudar y facilitar el establecimiento de los nuevos asentamientos y comunidades. Necesitaban orientación para iniciar un nuevo asentamiento y establecer una base sólida. Pero, a través del tiempo, los asentamientos maduraron y crecieron, y finalmente llegaron a resentir el control de los reyes de España, y como resultado, exigieron su independencia y libertad para formar su propio modo de vida y gobernarse a sí mismos.

Claramente, los reyes de España tenían resistencia con este movimiento. En este parte de historia, España solo quería las colonias porque hicieron un beneficio en el comercio. “La Europa misma por miras de sana política, debería haber preparado y ejecutado el proyecto de la independencia americana; no sólo porque el equilibrio del mundo así lo exige; sino porque este es el medio legítimo y seguro de adquirirse establecimientos ultramarinos de comercio.” Y porque España no quería perder las colonias, y sus conexiones comerciales y ganancias, las colonias necesitaban una persona para empezar un movimiento por la independencia, y lucha por sus derechos y libertades; y esa persona era Simón Bolívar.

Los colonos necesitaban luchar para su independencia. “Se han roto las cadenas; ya hemos sido libres, y nuestros enemigos pretenden de Nuevo esclavizarnos. Por lo tanto, la América combate con despecho; y rara vez la desesperación no ha arrastrado tras sí la victoria.” La libertad nunca se dio a los colonos, tuvieron que luchar por su derecho a la autodeterminación y la libertad de decidir el futuro de sus propias comunidades. “El espíritu de partido que, al presente, agita a nuestros estados, se encendería entonces con mayor encono, hallándose ausente la fuentes del poder, que únicamente puede reprimirlo.”

La Carta de Jamaica

Para mí, “Contestación de un americano meridional a un caballero de esta isla” contiene los elementos similares a Brevísima relación por las Casas. Las dos audiencias tienen los aspectos similares y como resultado Simón Bolívar utiliza las similares estrategias retoricas; el uso de los detalles específicos y el forma verbal de ‘nosotros’.

Similar a “La relación”, Simón Bolívar escriba a los lectores que no son de la región. Las dos audiencias son forasteras y como resultado Bolívar le promociona los detalles específicos al lector. Por ejemplo muchas veces él incluye la población, la área de las regiones y la cultura o el espíritu de la tierra. Estos detalles fortalece la credibilidad del autor. En adición, él menciona que La Nueva Granada es “el corazón de la América”. Estos tipos de descripciones son evidencia que Bolívar no solo sabe mucho sobre la región sino también es una parte de la gente y las culturas.

Además, él uso el forma de nosotros para demostrar su relación cercana. Sin embargo, él utiliza ‘nosotros’ mas que las Casas. En La relación, cuando las Casas describe los eventos de los conquistadores, él utiliza el forma ‘él’ o ‘ellos’ para distanciarse de los actos terribles de los conquistadores. Mientras a veces las Casas trata separarse, Bolívar necesita mostrar que él es una parte cada área y la región está unida. La biografía de Bolívar menciona que Bartolomé deseaba una región unida. Como resultado, él utiliza nosotros y proporciona las frases como ‘nuestra situación’ para expresar su meta de una unión de regiones unidas.

La Gran América

La carta de Jamaica nos da una perspectiva interesante, porque nos muestra algunas de las ideas de Bolívar en cómo quiere ver el desarrollo del Nuevo Mundo independiente. Con respecto a esto, lo que me fascina es la opinión de Bolívar sobre el futuro de gobernar para el Nuevo Mundo, especialmente la creación de un gobierno central para toda la region. Para mi, es un poco ambiguo lo que desea. Cuando habla sobre la tiranía de España y como trata a la tierra y a los indigenas, discute el tema como si el Nuevo Mundo hubiera una nación unida. Pero cuando empieza a hablar sobre el futuro y las políticas, dice que no quiere un gobierno que representa a toda la tierra, porque hay demasiado intereses geográficos, políticos, culturales etc. que se tiene que ser considerados, y es imposible hacerlo debajo de una administración. Además, Bolívar rechaza la idea de monarquias o, un “sistema federal entre los populares y representativos,” pero está a favor de una república central en Maracaibo o Las Casas después de la unificación de Venezuela y Nueva Granada. Sigue discutiendo otros regiones, que quiere ver, y que piensa sobre que va a pasar, pero sin embargo se indica la idea de una nación grande. Especialmente la cita, “Yo deseo más que otro alguno ver formar en América la más grande nación del mundo, menos por su extensión y riquezas que por su libertad y gloria, (7)” me llama la atención, porque ahora me parece que si fuera una posibilidad, Bolívar apoyaría a una nación grande. Como un gran héroe de la revolución, y a través de esto una figura importante en el nuevo desarrollo de los sistemas políticas independientes en Suda America, es necesario que entendamos las argumentaciones de Bolívar.

 

Reblogged from: ENGAGE – Wesleyan University. (Go to the original post…)

Jason R. Baron ’77 spent virtually all of his time during the past three decades working as a lawyer in Washington, D.C., at the Justice Department, as Director of Litigation at the National Archives, and in private practice.  But something changed a few years ago, and now in addition to continuing to do legal work, he is spending more and more of his time trying to improve the lives of children, especially girls, in a remote region of Cambodia.  We sat down with him to learn about the work he is doing through his charity, The Chelly Foundation.


Q:  What inspired you to create The Chelly Foundation?

A:  My late Mom (Selma Baron, but known to family and friends as “Chelly”), passed away in December 2012, after battling multiple sclerosis for over 40 years.   At the time of her death, she was in the excellent care of the staff of a local senior home in Potomac, Maryland, close to where I live.  One of her primary caretakers was a woman named Nan Nop, and I learned from Nan remarkable stories of her youth during the horrific time of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia.  

Students in one of our free English classes.

Students in one of our free English classes.

After my Mom passed, I made a pledge to Nan that I would like to honor my Mom’s memory by doing something to improve the lives of children and residents in Nan’s home village in the Kampot Province of Cambodia.  It took a couple of years for me to get started, but The Chelly Foundation was born out of that initial promise — and has gone on to become a large part of my life.

 

Q:  What did you do first?

A:  We started with Nan Nop returning to Cambodia to distribute books and other types of school supplies to 600 primary school children in her home village of Snay Anh Chet.  The village is situated about 3 hours southwest of Phnom Penh.  During that trip Nan laid the groundwork with local school officials for us to build a stand-alone library on the grounds of the local high school, complete with books and computers.   From the beginning, Nan’s younger brother Ess, who lives in Phnom Penh, has taken the lead on all activities we have carried out, including the construction of the library and a lot more — and we owe him a large doubt of gratitude for making the work of the Foundation his #1 priority.

High school students outside The Chelly Library, dedicated in January 2016.

High school students outside The Chelly Library, dedicated in January 2016.

In January 2016, I travelled to Cambodia to dedicate The Chelly Library – the first of its kind public school library in Kampot Province.  Nan and Ess acted as my guides while I was in the country, and they warned me that during the 3 hour drive and in the village itself there were no bathrooms!  On arrival at the school grounds on a Wednesday morning, I had what I can only describe as a life changing experience.  Hundreds and hundreds of school children, dressed in their black and white uniforms, lined the roadway and gathered around us to participate in the dedication ceremony.  It was an overwhelming experience, and left me with a mission to do as much as I could to continue to improve the lives of children in a country that is still struggling to overcome widespread illiteracy, high unemployment, and even the basic necessities of living (such as lack of clean water or sanitation facilities).

 

Q:  What other activities has The Chelly Foundation engaged in since then?

Students surrounding Samorn (their teacher) walking with Jason Baron, as part of the library's dedication ceremonies.

Students surrounding Samorn (their teacher) walking with Jason Baron, as part of the library’s dedication ceremonies.

A:  The last year has been kind of whirlwind.   After I left the village, 700 children signed up for our free English lessons. We hired an excellent teacher and while we couldn’t accommodate everyone, we have been teaching English lessons to 400 children.  We have provided seven four-year scholarships (6 to girls, 1 to a boy), for some of the poorest but qualified students in the village to attend the Royal University of Phnom Penh and other post-secondary institutions,  We have given stipends out for job training.  We built the first playground at a primary school anywhere in the district, and it has become a go-to attraction for young and old alike!   We have built bathrooms at local schools, and are in the process of installing three clean water tanks this year.   We have given away bicycles to students who couldn’t afford them and would otherwise have to walk up to 10 kilometers to get to school. We have given away uniforms, school supplies, and computers to another school.  There is no end to the things that children in this remote area need to help them live healthy lives and have a reasonable chance of completing their secondary school education.

 

Nan Nop, Manouv (our first Chelly Scholarship student at the Royal U. of Phnom Penh), Jason, and Ess.

Nan Nop, Manouv (our first Chelly Scholarship student at the Royal U. of Phnom Penh), Jason, and Ess.

Q:  What plans do you have for the future?

A:  We will be starting a major project this coming summer: building out a mango farm on two hectares of land that Nan has acquired.  We hope that in a couple of years we will be able to count on sustainable income from two or more harvests of mango fruit each year.  Beyond that, Nan and I have been talking about a dream project: the building of a “Chelly School” – a free magnet school where students will be invited to learn from the best teachers we can find.  And we will, of course, continue with all of the other activities mentioned above, and hopefully, depending on donations, we can expand our work to other villages in the Chumkuri District. That’s the dream anyway.

 

Q:   You mentioned other Wesleyan connections to Cambodia you know about.  Can you elaborate?

A:  One of the great things about getting involved in this project – which is all new to me and which involves a different set of skills than my years spent as a lawyer — is that I have met and am meeting so many good people along the way with real expertise in the nonprofit sector.  Naturally, this involves people from Wesleyan.  Sue Guiney ’77 and I have talked about the wonderful work she is doing in Cambodia in connection with her creative writing project, Writing Through.  I also recently have had a conversation with Hannah Brigham (’17) about the classroom-to-classroom pen pal exchange she has set up with Daniel Kim (’17), called Give Education.  I am hoping that students in the village we’re working in will someday soon be the beneficiaries of both Sue’s and Hannah’s projects.  I suspect that there are many other Wesleyan alums who have worked or are working in Cambodia, and I’d love to connect with them.

 

Q:  How can I learn more about The Chelly Foundation?

A:  Our Facebook page is www.facebook.com/thechellyfoundation, and I encourage all readers of this piece to follow us.  I’m excited to say that we are going to have a 2017 fundraiser on September 14 in Manhattan  – at the soon to be opened, fantastic Gulliver’s Gate mini-world facility, steps from Times Square.  You can learn more details by checking in with our Facebook page or our main webpage.  The Chelly Foundation is a 501(c)(3) charity and all donations are tax deductible.  Together I know we are making a difference in the lives of hundreds of children in Nan’s and surrounding villages.  All are invited!   

Students gathering around to hear the dedication speeches for the opening of The Chelly Library.

Students gathering around to hear the dedication speeches for the opening of The Chelly Library.

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »

Log in