This summer the JKCP International Leadership for Social Impact students held an NGO (non-governmental organization) Fair at the University of Pennsylvania campus. The purposes of this fair was to raise awareness around the campus for four very important causes, and to convince students to donate their NGO Coupons (symbolic dollar bill given out as everyone entered the quad) to our cause.
Throughout the four weeks, 19 JKCP International Affairs students were divided into 4 groups: Mission Transition, Wheels for Warriors, C.A.D.A.T., and Nadi. Different groups had different missions and visions. The Fair was one of the scales to examine the success of the NGO group. Our goal – to convince the highest number of our peers to support our cause instead of the other three options.
Fast forward to the day of the fair. We started preparing at 10 a.m. Each member of my group, Mission Transition had a different task. Valeria, Our Event Planner, went to the store to buy snacks, drinks and decoration supplies. Nicolas, our Media Manager, finalized the website, made flyers and constantly posted on Facebook page and twitter. Yoshiatsu, our Art Designer, made posters and decorated flyers. Carlos, our Communication Director, designed effective pitches for the fair. I was the Director of Finance. That morning, I finished the business plan and designed the function of Mission Transition. Even though each of us had a clear task, we were still willing to help our teammate and completed the goal. In order to make our NGO more appealing, we designed games and bought some interesting treats.
The Fair started at 4 p.m. Staff and students came back to the campus and this fair surprised many of them. Many students were really interested in the fair and went to all the groups. After a long time of consideration, students donated the money they were given to the group that they thought would be the most successful.
As more and more students visited the fair, NGO groups tried their best to attract students to their booths. The process was competitive and fun. Although music and games might not sound appropriate during NGO fair, these were really good tools to get people to our tent.
Each summer at JKCP's International Leadership Program for Social Impact, students come together from around the world to work in teams on their "Invisible Issues" project throughout the 4 weeks. The final project and Global Awareness Fair allows students to practice teamwork, public speaking, grant-writing, and a formal pitch. This is a unique pre-college program that allows students to live at the University of Pennsylvania and gain real-world experiences.
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