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Thursday, June 23 • 13:45 - 14:45
PK07.04c - Recreation and Sport Students as Global Citizens Experience Service Learning Through Community Development Projects in Nicaragua

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“Making a Difference” in Nicaragua is realizing students’ role of a larger community bringing classroom ideals of recreation into a developing world context. Through international service learning, students become empowered and inspired to effect change through the concept of recreation and sport for community development. This narrative describes global citizenship education for recreation and sport students using a study abroad service learning trip to Nicaragua.

Students utilize their knowledge of recreation services and the theory of play, and apply it in a disadvantaged community setting where, even despite the language barrier, the power of recreation and sport becomes the universal language. Right to Play advocates that children have a natural love to play and it is believed that every child deserves the right to play in order to overcome the effects of poverty in disadvantaged communities.

The service learning experience presented an unexpected outcome for the students. The perspective of a student making a difference in Nicaragua became reversed in that Nicaragua would make a profound difference to the student in a disadvantaged community context. Students identify themselves beyond their individualism and as part of a bigger community. They experience discomfort upon arrival to a rustic and remote environment under conditions unlike their own, to very quickly finding their own way through various sustainable service projects, while at the same time making life-long friends, to appreciating the simplicity of life and the discovery that life is about so much more than just an individual on a solitary path.

This service learning opportunity provided an alternate perspective of recreation and sport for students that may otherwise go unnoticed without this study abroad experience. This opportunity has modified the perspective of career opportunities for the student that connects the classroom content to an integrated global realization of recreation programs.

avatar for Sherri Branscombe

Sherri Branscombe

Professor of Recreation and Leisure Services & Sport Management, Humber College
Sherri Branscombe is a Professor of Recreation and Leisure Services and of Sport Management with the School of Hospitality, Recreation and Tourism at Humber College. Sherri is working on her Master of Sports Science degree and her areas of interest are community development, sport... Read More →

Thursday June 23, 2016 13:45 - 14:45 EDT
UCC 56