Jumping to help the world

PUHI n Time is running out for a group of students who go by the name of Jump — Juveniles Use Media Power to change the world.

“We were here until late Friday night, and we almost spent the night here,” said Robin Worley, advisor for the student-based group. “We had a lot of contributions, but after we looked around, we went home for a couple of hours. We’ve been working non-stop.”

On Saturday, the group of students hosted a garage sale at one of the classroom buildings at Island School.

“We’re trying to raise money to purchase video equipment that we will leave with other youth groups in Africa,” Worley said.

“It’s been a lot of hard work, but the students have been real good,” she said. “But, we need to raise about $10,000 for equipment.”

The Jump group, comprised of 11 students, one of whom is home from her first year at college, and Worley is planning to leave Kaua‘i for a month’s stay in Kenya where they will work with Kenyan youth groups in spreading awareness about HIV/AIDS.

“I believe it is very important to give back to the world,” said Carly Snyder, 14, one of the Jump students who was helping at the cashbox. “Ray Lyman Wilbur once said, ‘Unless we think of others and do something for them, we miss one of the greatest sources of happiness.’ I completely agree. Knowing that my generation is the future, and HIV/AIDS is a problem, we need to start now.”

Armed with a strong background in computer technology, and as a technology instructor at Island School, Worley said Jump will utilize a variety of high-tech strategies to get their messages out to the world.

These include blogs, video productions, document files, and short digital stories. While in Kenya, Worley said people can follow their trip by logging on to: takingitglobal.com.

“The students are getting real excited about this trip,” Worley said. “Already they’ve made contact with their Kenyan counterparts and started exchanging e-mails.”

Students had to each raise about $4,500 apiece to make this trip, Worley explained. Most of the students had no trouble with the fundraising as they dove into part-time jobs and did a variety of activities to help raise their portion of the expenses.

To help raise funds for the equipment, they’ve already been involved in several fund-raisers, the garage sale being their latest venture.

The intention of the Jump club is to partner with other groups in countries outside the United States. Jump clubs are high school students from anywhere in the United States that have an interest in working with their counterparts anywhere in the world, Worley explained.

“I think that this is exactly the type of program teens need to be involved with,” said Kyle Marsh in one of the Jump fliers. “We need to reach out, gather our resources and start to realize that no matter how far apart, we are all inter-connected and equally responsible for our fate. Only together can we ever hope to be powerful enough to affect a change for the better.”

“We started it here at Island School, and already, we’ve had interest from several other high schools outside of Kaua‘i that are interested in forming their own Jump clubs,” Worley said, encouraged that the enthusiasm has already generated interest.

In addition to the well-received garage sale, Worley said they’ll be planning one other major push before they leave on June 30.

The event will probably be a wine-tasting and will feature the students telling the Jump story to adults who attend the function.

Students who will be making the trip are: Rory Marsh, Aria Castillo, Kelli-Rose Hooser, Kelsey Ritchie, Andrew Jones, Erik Talvi, Isabelle Worley, Carly Snyder, Bailey Knopf, Juli Blachowiak and Alec Burney.

To help the Jump program, people may contribute through Island School, or get more information by going online to: www.jumptochangetheworld.org.

• Dennis Fujimoto, photographer and staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or dfujimoto@kauaipubco.com

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