Our bloggers were at the White House

Posted on | December 10, 2014 | No Comments

White HouseYesterday the White House, in conjunction with Hosteling International, convened a meeting of 100 influential travel bloggers to talk about global awareness, travel, and study abroad programs in the United States. Titled the White House Summit on Travel Abroad and Global Citizenship, it included a wide-ranging discussion of the importance of international education and travel. Attendees were addressed by the White House Chief of Staff Dennis McDonough, Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, and Michelle Obama’s Chief of Staff Tina Tchen. They also had the chance to listen to discussion among representatives from organizations such as the Peace Corps, Gilman Scholarships, and the Fulbright Scholarship program and travel editors and writers like Paula Froelich, Editor in Chief of Yahoo Travel and Robert Reid, who writes for National Geographic.

We are proud that four of the bloggers participating in this year’s Passports with Purpose fundraiser were invited to the White House.

Kara Williams who blogs for both The Vacation Gals and Expedia spent last summer working as the Communications Coordinator on a Semester at Sea voyage. Appropriately enough, her PwP prize this year is a snazzy, yellow eBags hardside carryon suitcase.

David Lee is the founder and editor in chief of Go Backpacking and Travel Blog Success who has chosen expat life in Colombia. His prize is a great one for fellow travel bloggers: A lifetime membership to Travel Blog Success, which helps bloggers make money from their work.

Colleen Lanin spent her junior year of college in France and has long been an advocate for traveling families on her site The Travel Mamas. She also co-hosts the #KidsNTrips Twitter chat, which from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. PST on Thursday, December 11 will focus on Passports with Purpose. Her prize is a one-year Home Exchange membership. The winner will have a chance to exchange stays in their own home with apartments, villas, and houses all over the world.

Elena Sonnino, a first-generation American whose family hails from Italy, is a writer and educator who encourages travel as a means to wellness on her site Live, Do, Grow. Her prize lets the winner and friends travel the world through wine at the ENO wine bar in Washington, DC.

Please join us in congratulating these four bloggers on such a prestigious invitation. We’re thrilled both that they got to participate and that the government of the United States recognizes the importance of study and travel abroad and we hope that it inspires a whole new generation of students (all potential travel bloggers!) to visit other countries and reach out to help in the places that have the most need.

Here at Passports with Purpose, we believe very much in the value of exposure to other cultures. All of us on the PwP board and volunteer team have either studied or lived abroad. Not only that, but the charity we are supporting this year, Sustainable Harvest International, was founded by Florence Reed, a former Peace Corps volunteer. Her work in Panama showed her the human cost of tropical deforestation.

Interested in watching a broadcast of the proceedings? A stream of the summit is available.

P.S.Want to see he rest of our prizes? Please visit our catalogue. Every $10 donated enters you to win. All donations, exclusive of Paypal fees, goes to Sustainable Harvest International to help farmers in Honduras.

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