Blog

New Scholarship Will Be Available in January for a 2019 Summer Exchange to Sestri Levante, Italy!

Plans are underway for a summer 2019 homestay exchange with Sestri Levante, Italy, and the Gralen Eidam Wilson Youth Ambassador Scholarship Fund will be looking for local juniors or seniors in high school to award with a travel scholarship. Applications will be delivered to local high schools the first week of January, and will also be available to download from this site. Stay tuned!

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Sestri Levante, Italy

Shingu Delegates/Scholarship Recipients Share Their Experiences

Our first scholarship recipients, Emily and Thea, returned from Shingu on July 26 and have been spending the past two weeks with the incoming student delegation from Japan.  These were the youth from the families in Japan that hosted the girls, coming to Santa Cruz as part of an established exchange program with the Shingu subcommittee of the Sister Cities Committee.  Clearly, they all became great friends during this exchange! In Santa Cruz, the Japanese students also were able to experience family life in Santa Cruz, hosted by local families (including Emily and Thea’s families), and the Shingu subcommittee members had planned a full schedule of fun experiences for them.

Tonight at the farewell party for the Japanese students, Thea and Emily made a presentation of their scholarship project, which was comparing daily life in Shingu with daily life in Santa Cruz with slideshow and a photo album project.

 

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Emily and Thea got to visit historical shrines, beautiful landmarks, a fan festival, learn about traditional Japanese tea ceremonies, and even attend high school with their Japanese friends.  They raved about the Japanese food, and both agreed that the best part of the whole trip were the wonderful families that welcomed the two girls into their homes.

 

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Congratulations to our scholarship recipients for a great experience in citizen diplomacy, and thank you to our donors for giving them this opportunity!

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New Friends!

From a Youth Ambassador in Shingu

Our first scholarship recipients left for Shingu on July 3 and return on July 26!  I thought our donors would enjoy reading this message we received last week from one of the girls, Emily…

I want to thank the committee greatly for this experience, and let you know that Thea and I are incredibly happy with how our stay in Shingu has begun! Our host families are beyond kind towards us, and I am glad to be with them! The students and population of Shingu as a whole have treated us with the upmost respect, and I am incredibly grateful! Thea and I have already begun to form our project and will be working on it more intensely as the days go by. Again, thank you greatly for this experience and I will forever be in debt to your kindness.

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Our scholarship recipients, Thea and Emily.

 

Your donations at work!  Thanks, and look for updates about future scholarships!

 

 

Happy Birthday, Gralen!

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In honor of Gralen’s birthday, from now through April 30, donations of $100 or more will receive a bottle of Gralen’s Grace 2016 Syrah Rosé from Wilson Family Vineyards, in appreciation of your generous support! 

 

Donations to the Gralen Eidam Wilson Youth Ambassador Scholarship Fund go directly to helping awarded youth travel and represent Santa Cruz abroad.  Awards may also go to youth in our Sister Cities overseas to encourage international visitors to come to Santa Cruz in our effort to continue fostering global connections and awareness.  All donations are tax deductible as part of the Santa Cruz Sister Cities Support group programs.  Santa Cruz Sister Cities Support is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (Tax ID #770575231). Any donation amount is appreciated!

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Please be sure to type “Gralen Eidam Wilson Scholarship” in the special instructions field!

Annual Birthday Fund Drive

Time for our annual Birthday Drive in recognition of Gralen’s birthday on April 6 – we are so happy to have our first two scholarship recipients preparing to visit Japan this summer because of donors like YOU!  

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Gralen and fellow youth delegate Duncan Scott on a 1986 Sister Cities exchange to Shingu, kindly hosted by the Yajima family.

Last year we raised $5,000 in honor of what would have been Gralen’s 50th birthday.  Can we raise $5,100 this year?

Your donation helps young people from Santa Cruz represent their city, state, and country overseas, and helps American youth learn about life in other countries around the world.  To quote President Eisenhower, an advocate of citizen diplomacy,

peaceful relations between nations require understanding and mutual respect between individuals.”

What better way to create a peaceful future than to start with our youth?

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Special Birthday Fundraiser Thank You!

From now through April 30, for donations of $100 or more, you will be sent a bottle of Gralen’s Grace 2016 Syrah Rosé wine from Wilson Family Vineyards! Click the link below!

Donations to the Gralen Eidam Wilson Youth Ambassador Scholarship Fund go directly to helping our young recipients travel and represent Santa Cruz abroad.  Awards may also go to youth in our Sister Cities overseas to encourage international visitors to come to Santa Cruz in our effort to continue fostering global connections and awareness.  All donations are tax deductible as part of the Santa Cruz Sister Cities Support group programs.  Santa Cruz Sister Cities Support is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization (Tax ID #770575231).

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Please be sure to type “Gralen Eidam Wilson Scholarship” in the special instructions field!

 

Meet Our First Scholarship Recipients!

Meet Thea and Emily, our first ever Gralen Eidam Wilson Youth Ambassador Scholarship recipients!

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Before the interview process began, our committee had decided that we would like to send two youth on this exchange.  ALL of the candidates we interviewed were extremely impressive and highly deserving – we have some amazing youth in our community!  We noticed so many things Thea and Emily had in common that it seemed like they would make a perfect team.  They will spend three weeks in Shingu this July, and will work together on a collaborative project to share their experiences with our community when they return home.  They will also be active, welcoming hosts to incoming delegates from Shingu in August.

Congratulations to Thea and Emily, and THANK YOU to all of our supporters for helping our youth ambassadors represent our city (and state, and country) in Japan this year!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2017-2018 Application Forms Are Here!

Application forms for the 2017-2018 scholarship award are available online for download here as of September 25, 2017.  The first scholarship award will be for a junior or senior in high school for participation in the 2018 exchange to Shingu, Japan.  Please click and download each of the links below.  Hard copies will be distributed to high schools in the city as soon as Spanish translations are available.  If you would like a Spanish translation of these materials, please send us a message through our Contact page and we will be happy to make them available to you!

Gralen Eidam Wilson Youth Ambassador Scholarship Fact Sheet 2017-2018

Gralen Eidam Wilson Youth Ambassador Application 2017-2018