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Opportunity Partners with Two Dollar Challenge: Student Program Makes Poverty a Reality

By Amy Carol Wolff

Opportunity International is pleased to announce our partnership withTwo Dollar Challenge (TDC), an organization based out of the University of Mary Washington (UMW) in Fredericksburg, Va.

The program, where students live or eat on just $2 per day for one week, raises money for Opportunity Trust Groups in Kenya and Colombia through our peer-to-peer lending website,OptINnow. This initiative gives students the chance to make a personal connection with Opportunity’s clients, learning more about their lives and work.  Throughout the week, students have the chance to create educational opportunities for their peers (i.e. panel discussions, video screenings, etc.) and cool fundraising events like concerts and sports tournaments.

Here’s a little background on Two Dollar Challenge:

During the fall semester of 2006, Dr. Shawn Humphrey gave UMW students in his principles of macroeconomics class a unique challenge: live on $2 a day for a week. In the spring of 2007, that challenge became the “Living on $2 a day” project for his economic development class. The project is now called Challenge Week. Students participate by choosing a cause and a partner, and setting a monetary goal.

Over the past few years, the UMW group has raised over $7,000 benefiting microfinance. This year, the group is  calling on universities and high schools across the country to come together during the month of April, choose a week, and help to raise at least $15,000 to help provide Opportunity’s life-changing microfinance tools to people living in poverty in the developing world.  

TDC provides materials on how to shape this event so that it is fun, educational and productive for the students involved. The manual offers fundraising ideas, event suggestions and leadership tips.

Current school partners include: University of Chicago, Ohio Northern University, Indiana University and UMW. And we’re looking for more. If you or someone you know is interested in joining this exciting event, us[/intlink].

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