Cape 8th-graders selected to travel to Australia
Two 8th-grade students from Trafalgar Middle School were chosen through the People to People Ambassador Program to travel to Australia for three weeks in June.
Since the People to People Ambassador Program was founded in 1956 by President Dwight Eisenhower it has had more than 400,000 alumni who have traveled to seven continents.
Carmel Ferraro, the mother of the two 8th-graders students, explained that the program began because President Eisenhower wanted to make an organization where children would see what the children of other countries do.
She said her twin daughters received a letter a couple months ago from the People to People Ambassador Program to inform them that they were nominated to travel to Australia. She explained that they had to go through a prescreening test to be accepted. Out of 40 nominations, Brianna and Gianna were among the 15 students picked for the program in Lee County.
The three-week journey will provide Brianna and Gianna with the opportunity to experience meetings with government officials, educational activities and stay with an Australian host family. They will visit Cairns, Townsville, Yeppoon, Sunshine Coast, Moreton Island and Sydney.
“It’s an honor to be accepted into this program,” Carmel Ferraro said, explaining that her daughters will have the opportunity to meet with parliament and the ambassador of Australia. “It will change their whole way of life when they experience the travel.”
The twins will be 14 years old when they go on their journey to Australia this summer.
Brianna said they were nominated through their academics. She explained that the program will allow her to visit a different country to learn about its culture and meet their ambassadors and learn about their government.
Gianna said she is mostly excited to go swimming in the Great Barrier Reef once they arrive in Australia.
Carmel said the trip will cost $14,000 for the two of them, which includes the travel, stay, hosting homes and activities.
To help raise money for the trip they will be hosting a Bowl-a-Thon at Friendship Lanes on Del Prado Boulevard Saturday, Dec. 4. Ten percent of the money collected during the Bowl-a-Thon will be donated to the girls from Friendship Lanes. A silent auction will also be held during the event from various merchants in town.
Those who wish to contribute gift basket donations, or any other items for the silent auction, are welcome to call Carmel at (239) 242-1066.
“Everybody is invited to come,” she said.
Another event is scheduled to take place in February to raise additional funds for the girls to take their trip to Australia.