Jade, Nat, Dakota, and Ellie from the AFLW Brisbane Lions FC will be travelling to Nepal with World Youth International for healthcare and teaching placements.

As part of their commitment to volunteering in Nepal, they are fundraising AUD $20,000 in total for the World Youth International School in Nepal, which will go towards enabling students living below the poverty line to access educational resources and healthcare.

A portion will also go towards the operating costs of core and extra-curricular classes and programs, such as the sports and creative arts programs launched in November 2022 by AFL Brisbane Lions Midfielder Hugh McCluggage, who also spent his off-season volunteering with World Youth International in Nepal.

“We followed Hugh’s adventure quite closely, which also inspired us to join World Youth International’s program,” said Jade, AFLW Footballer, Paramedic, Nursing Student.

“Personally, I have always wanted to go to Nepal. In 2015, I was supposed to go there on a similar experience, but the huge earthquake made it unsafe to go. I ended up going to Thailand, Laos, and China where we visited rural communities, helped build a pre-school and trekked through China. This really sparked my love for travel and helping others. I believe that the experience we had helping in the community to help build the school shaped me into the person I am today. It made me realise what is important in life and how happy and kind these people were, even when they were struggling to afford basic needs like clean water and food. It taught me so much and I am incredibly grateful for everything it offered me. I have no doubt this trip will be an incredible experience as well.”

Jade, Nat, Dakota and Ellie are extremely excited to be joining World Youth International as Sports Ambassadors, raising awareness and funds for underprivileged students, while also having the opportunity to travel.

“I have a strong passion for helping people and using what knowledge I know to help other people better their own lives,” said Nat, AFLW Footballer, Exercise Sports Science/Allied Health Worker.

“I think we are in such a privileged position and that it’s really important to ‘give back’ and put yourself in situations that are going to help you grow and develop as a person as well. I love the positive impact that World Youth International makes to communities in need, and how this impact has a long-lasting effect on the communities and schools even after the initial adventure or project is concluded.”

“I’ve always enjoyed working with children and can see myself doing a lot more of this work during off-seasons,” said Dakota Davidson, AFLW Brisbane Lions FC Footballer and Sales Executive.

“I like to travel, help people, and spending time with children - so why not combine all 3? Fundraising for the World Youth International School will empower so many students in so many ways. You never know what these children are capable of with a little opportunity. I’m looking forward to my teaching placement in Nepal and seeing the faces of the children, knowing I’m making a difference to their lives. I also can’t wait to experience the Nepalese culture."

Ellie, AFLW Footballer who is currently studying teaching at Griffith University has always had a passion for teaching.

“I am extremely grateful that World Youth International has provided an opportunity to partake in such an impactful adventure,” said Ellie.

“I know this will allow me to develop personally by experiencing the positive attitude towards life that the people of Nepal are known for. It will allow me to approach my teaching in many different ways that I would not be able to experience here in Australia. I cannot wait to experience the joy and education that I will both give and receive whilst I am there.”

Disasters such as the pandemic affected us all; but those living in poverty are always the most vulnerable as it makes it even harder for them to break the cycle that so many families have lived in for generations. While now declared over, the pandemic continues to have a significant impact on the Nepali communities World Youth International works within. In particular, it has been incredibly challenging for the World Youth International School to continue providing students access to quality education and healthcare.

Donations will go towards providing education, resources, accommodation, meals and healthcare at the World Youth International School. It will also help fund teaching staff to facilitate classes. This will enable many students to learn new skills that will expand their development and open up more employment pathways.

Can you help Jade, Nat, Dakota, and Ellie give the gift of an education? Donations can be placed: https://worldyouth.org.au/fundraising/aflw-fundraising-campaign

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