I honestly never thought I’d be doing this,” Maddie said as she stuffed her clothes into an extra-large suitcase. “I was just a normal kid. It just goes to show what you can do when you understand the need and receive the right encouragement.”
Her friend Clara nodded, punching numbers into a calculator. “Well, I’ve just tallied up the donations – and it looks like we’ll be bringing enough to hand out 400 water filters in Cambodia this year.”
“That’s amazing!” Rae chimed in as she and her sister Emmy helped fold Maddie’s clothes. “A few years ago, I thought this was going to be like all the other things we did as kids – remember that lemonade stand? But we’re really helping people, even better Maddie and Clara are joining us this time! Are you two excited?”
“I can’t wait to meet the people we’ve been helping the past two years,” said Maddie in response “I’d love to find out what more we can do; my parents and I are going to visit the Clinton Health Clinic and see if we can maybe help out there too.”
“Plus, we might get to teach a class at the orphanage!” Emmy exclaimed
The four girls eyes lit up, as they talked about teaching some of the orphans that first inspired them to start Four Girls For Families.
Maddie and her partners Rae, Clara and Emmy were packing for their upcoming trip to Cambodia – Rae and Emmy, sisters, as well as their brother, will be embarking on their third trip, but this time around their friends, Maddie and Clara, will be joining them, getting a chance to see first hand the fruits of their labor.
It all started when Rae and Emmy came back from a family trip to Cambodia, touched by the life and kindness they saw in orphaned children who lived in poverty there. Showing their trip photos to their friends, Maddie and Clara, the four decided they wanted to help the orphans and planned on donating money. Upon further research however, they found that government corruption would likely prevent the money from reaching the orphanage. So– like any MicroSociety students worth their salt, their problem is solved.
The girls launched a small operation selling bracelets and t-shirts out of their house to bring clean water to Cambodian villages. What began as a partnership with the non-profit *People for Care* took off. Now their own non-profit organization *Four Girls for Families* raises funds to provide building materials for homes – as well as water filters – to ensure the safety of some of the country’s poorest villagers. And the determined social entrepreneurs have expanded their operation by moving out of their parents home and opening up shop in town.
According to Maddie, Rae, Clara, and Emmy,they learned to become leaders in MicroSociety at their Laurel Hill school. They work with students and adults of all ages to collaborate on projects and initiatives – skills they have utilized to take their non-profit to the next level.
Most recently, the foursome has teamed up with local businesses and other schools within the community to sell t-shirts. Donors are given blank stickers to decorate so their water filters have a personal touch.
When the girls arrive in Cambodia next week, they will be delivering more than just supplies. They also plan to teach a class on American culture, history, and lifestyles to the children at one of the local orphanages.
Last time the girls visited Cambodia, they raised enough money to build a home for one family along with their annual water filter delivery system. They aim to do so again this year! And the girls will, of course, learn new skills and valuable lessons of their own from the villagers. They have already grown tremendously as a result of their trips. They are far more globally aware, and having seen the difference they are making, their confidence has grown as well.
And now, the Fearsome Foursome want you to know that they will be leaving for Cambodia with their families this week and they hope that you will find a way to support their cause.
*How can you help?*
75% of deaths in Cambodia are caused by unclean drinking water – something that can be prevented with a simple, $12 water filter. Donate now by visiting the organization’s site at www.fourgirlsforfamilies.org.
To keep up with the girls during their trip to Cambodia, be sure to follow them on Facebook and share the news with your friends and family, too!
The Four Girls will be delivering the water filters on Feb 21st and 22nd. We’ll have a follow up story on the girls when they return from their trip to see how it went and what they learned, lookout for it within a month!