Teen wins trip to help others


Elleke Belet’s dream is to one day work with the humanitarian group Doctors Without Borders.

The LCCVI student will get a start on her humanitarian travel this year after winning a contest which will send her to Nicaragua for 12 days.

The Grade 12 student applied for the Blyth Academy’s Global High School Scholarship and is one of eight students from across Canada vying to have their travel experience paid for.

Belet, who is active in nine clubs in her school and volunteers with the Sarnia Legion Pipe Band and Support Our Troops, had planned a trip to the second poorest country in the northern hemisphere before.

“I wanted to go to Nicaragua with my church but it fell through because not enough people wanted to go,” she says. “And my dream is to work with Doctors Without Borders.” She plans to study nursing at McMaster before beginning her humanitarian work.

In Nicaragua, Belet would be working on projects to provide basic sanitation and buildings. “We likely will be doing some programs with children, too.”

Belet was chosen as a finalist based on her community service and a 1,000-word essay. She found out this weekend she had won the trip by only six votes.

“It feels so awesome that the whole community got together and voted for me.”