With 2020 just around the corner, we were inspired to reflect on the last year.
There have been countless adventures and aha moments along with new programs, partnerships, destinations, and new staff members joining the Insight family. It’s hard to know where to begin but January seems as good a place as any.
This year started much like the year before with cohorts of university students departing for semesters in development in Fiji and Uganda. From January through March, they explored new corners of the world while attending courses at Makerere University and Fiji National University, and internships at socially-focused organizations. They experienced the power of informed action through 300 hours of collaborative internships and were encouraged to embrace their potential to drive meaningful change. And as with every cohort, they provided our staff with new reasons to love what we do.
Back home, Insight opened its first official university chapter at Carleton University and welcomed speaking opportunities on entrepreneurship and volunteer tourism at the University of Western Ontario and the University of Michigan, respectively. Our team also facilitated workshops at St George’s School Global Stewardship Conference.
The spring was a busy time for our High School programs. March saw Insight staff leading Sutherland Secondary students through a global citizenship program in Ecuador and April saw them taking off to the Yukon with international students from Bodwell High School. Before we knew it, it was May and our facilitators ventured back to the Yukon and south to Costa Rica with students from Mulgrave School.
Following an amazing summer semester in Fiji and Uganda, Insight launched its first-ever university program in Thailand! Located in Chiang Mai, our new Thailand program has established partnerships with Chiang Mai National University and over 12 of NGOs, including Elephant Parade and Insight staff also proudly announced a new partnership with the State University of New York.
In October, Insight staff lead a 4th-year commerce course on social entrepreneurship at Queen’s University and ran a workshop on ethical tourism at the BC Social Studies Conference. In November, they ran workshops at the Ottawa-Carleton Education Network Conference (OCENET). In between all these speaking engagements, we also piloted Insight’s first small group travel program in Uganda!
And about those aha moments… Insight is committed to promoting global citizenship at home and abroad, and in 2019, that translated into Global Issues Seminars on volunteer tourism and holiday waste. The cherry on top of the cake? A 10-week summer course that invited 15 participants to engage with some of the most pressing issues facing our planet. The group was made up of a mix of recent graduates and young professionals and took place in Vancouver.
By December, Insight staff couldn’t wait to celebrate a truly memorable year. And what better way to celebrate than to host a party to officially launch their very own brand-new Downtown Vancouver office!
So thank you for being part of the Insight community. And thank you to our team of amazing staff and supporters. Our success is your success.
We couldn’t do any of this without you.