Volunteering around the world

Pictured is SUNY Oswego graduate Claudia Lifton-Schwerner with foster dog “Mellow” at Paws & Effect. Lifton has entered an international competition to volunteer around the world for one year with Global Vision International. She has landed in the top five of the contest and voting continues until Friday.

by Nicole Reitz

Around the world in 365 days —  that’s what Oswego resident Claudia Lifton-Schwerner hopes to accomplish with Global Vision International, a volunteer abroad program.

Lifton, a recent graduate of SUNY Oswego, has entered an international competition to volunteer around the world for one year. Through five rounds, she has found herself as one of the top five contestants.

For the first round, Global Vision International choose the Top 50 entries. Stages two to four were determined by public vote on the program’s Facebook page.

Lifton had to submit an original photo that encapsulated a quote by Jawaharlal Nehru, make a travel guide, and create a short video diary. Over the past three months, Lifton has completed these tasks and her video is now posted online for the ultimate public vote, which will run until Friday, May 18.

“It would be a huge change in my life and it’s kind of a perfect situation for me,” said Lifton. “It’s everything I’ve always wanted to do. I think its a long shot to win, because of the number of votes needed, but its worth a try.”

The winner will volunteer on a range of long-term, sustainable Global Vision International programs and expeditions. Lifton would visit India, Thailand, South Africa, Brazil, Kenya, Peru, Mexico. The prize includes  accommodation, food and flights.

In return, Lifton would help communities with sustainable farming, research the oceans, build homes, teach English to children, and work with some wildlife, among various other opportunities.

She would also blog about her experiences.

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