Ripple effects from the One Voice For Laos project on loc... by cassandrahastie
November 17, 2012 09:53 AM | 0 0 comments | 1411 1411 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

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Rachel Castellano on One Voice For Laos. Teen Bio #2
by cassandrahastie
December 03, 2012 09:11 PM | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Rachel and Wanalee
Rachel and Wanalee

Rachel Castellano wrote the piece below about her experiences with One Voice for Laos and her reasons for being involved with One Voice for Laos. Rachel, the author of this heart-warming piece, is pictured here with Wanalee, an orphan from Laos......


I joined One Voice for Laos with the intention of doing what I could to help

children across the world. I had no idea I would actually travel there, and experience

something that would truly change my life.

What started out as a fun project with

my friends, turned into a huge part of my life that I'm incredibly passionate about.

It's hard to contemplate the amount of things I've learned from the

experiences I've had with One Voice for Laos. Not only was I able to travel to Asia

and immerse myself in an unfamiliar culture while making long-lasting connections

with the most amazing children I've ever met, I gained confidence and experience in

organizing and carrying out fundraisers back at home.

The other teenagers who I traveled with would agree that it was just as eye

opening to see the differences between the kids at the Deak Kum Pa orphanage and

us, as it was to see the similarities. They loved sports and hanging out with their

friends. I had conversations with them that could have easily been with an American

teenager. The part of them I will remember forever was how happy they were. They

smiled and laughed the same amount, if not more than American kids who have

their own room, good food, clean clothes, and the latest electronics.

I'm proud to say that I helped raise money for these children who I would say

I look up. By our fundraising efforts, they were able to obtain healthier and more

nutritious food. This project showed me that a small group of concerned citizens is

enough to make a difference. This gave me hope that although there is a lot of evil

and unfairness in the world, there are a lot of wonderful, capable people out there to

fix it. They just have to find the desire and will power to do so.

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The One Voice For Laos Project!
by cassandrahastie
November 17, 2012 10:19 AM | 0 0 comments | 23 23 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Rachel Castellano, Evelyne Pouget and Hudson Talbott with Orphans in Laos( Seng Song and Kong Lee)
Rachel Castellano, Evelyne Pouget and Hudson Talbott with Orphans in Laos( Seng Song and Kong Lee)
Hello all! Welcome to the One Voice For Laos Bios blog!

One Voice for Laos is an organization run mainly by teens in the Hudson Valley that works to support an orphanage(The Deak Kum Pa Orphanage) in Laos. This project has had unbelievable success rates. This past summer, 4 Teens and 2 adults embarked on a life changing journey to Laos to brighten the lives of the Orphans. Throughout the year, the Organization holds fundraisers to benefit the Orphans.

One Voice for Laos has recently asked it's members to submit bios about themselves and why they are part of this organization. The One Voice for Laos group has decided to post one teen's bio every week! I hope this community is inspired by these touching bios. If you are a teen and you want to be involved in this project feel free to check out our Facebook page. This altruistic and beautiful effort could always use more motivated teens. 


Cassandra Hastie
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Caleb Rudge on One Voice for Laos. Teen Bio #1
by cassandrahastie
November 17, 2012 10:18 AM | 1 1 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink
Caleb Rudge and Kum Seng
Caleb Rudge and Kum Seng

One Voice for Laos has impact. Like a stone thrown into a pond, the rippling effects move out in all directions. By bringing teenagers out of their comfort zone, One Voice For Laos kindles potential within teenagers that would otherwise be lost to society's effort to convince everyone that it's good to blend in. 

While teenagers are being empowered, children over 10,000 miles away reap the rewards of additional resources provided by the teenagers of One Voice For Laos. In Laos I recognized that the influence our fundraising had much more value than the dollars themselves. A smile from a healthy child is worth million bucks.

Just as the growing bodies of the orphans are being nourished, the entire community of One Voice For Laos is cultivated through compassion and humanitarianism. A generation of Orphans is given opportunities otherwise unattainable and a small yet envigorated community in the rural catskill mountains recognizes that it is part of a global economy of fellowship.

I'm in college now and I'm still perplexed by the influence One Voice For Laos has had on me. The hope and direction instilled in me while being apart of such a generous project carries me through even the toughest moments. Anyone who looks at the cover of a newspaper these days knows that its not an easy planet to exist on. The commensalistic relationships we have often taken for granted seem to be dissolving into chaos. Any youth in America knows that he or she will have a harder time living the same lifestyle as his or her parents due to the increasing pressures on decreasing resources. 

One Voice For Laos has given me conviction that each and every human being is capable of leading in positive ways. I also know that no matter what my future has in store for me, there is a community of people I can rely on to help pick me up when I fall and pat me on my back when I succeed. In One Voice For Laos I have confidence, for confidence is what One Voice For Laos has given me.

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November 17, 2012
So beautiful, so touching! Great work all of you teens with big hearts out there!

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