How The Ef Canadian Global Citizens Fund Made A Student’s Travel Dream Take Flight. 

Ready to be the bridge for your students and the world? Learn more about the Fund at

In our ongoing commitment to levelling travel’s playing field, we founded the Canadian Global Citizens Fund. EF has allocated 1 million dollars over the next four years to enable more students than ever to access our tours. Through the Fund, schools that identify educational travel opportunities as important but lack the financial means are eligible.

The first recipient of our Canadian Global Citizens Fund is Emma, and her touching story took her from Arnprior, a small, scenic town west of Ottawa, all the way to Europe, allowing her to join her classmates on a much-anticipated tour of Greece and Italy.

Emma, active in her high school and community, began to impress her teachers as early as Grade 9 by creating an Equity Club, the first of its kind in her school. Its founding values, to foster inclusion and belonging through understanding and embracing our differences, align with the worldviews we value and witness EF travellers returning home with – a perfect fit.

Although she had never been outside of Canada, Emma had her sights on exploring the world someday. Studying Greek history in class deepened Emma’s wanderlust to visit the cities and sites she learned about. Luckily, her teacher Lidia Pritchard understood travel’s importance for making learning come to life and chose EF’s well-loved Ancient Empires tour in Italy and Greece for her students. When Lidia sent the exciting announcement to her students, she was not surprised that Emma eagerly responded first.

As the group’s tour planning began, Emma discovered she was unable to go on this dream trip after all. She and her family determined this tour was not in their budget that year. Although disappointed, Emma’s selfless spirit shone through, and despite not being able travel herself, she raised money for her best friend to go on the tour.

Teachers and students embarked on creative ways to fundraise for their big trip. Emma generously dedicated long, exhausting hours of labour baking and selling pies for the fundraiser, doing it all to help her friend.

Attending an EF Tours Meet and Greet, Lidia learned about the Canadian Global Citizens Fund and deserving Emma immediately came to mind. Lidia reached out to EF the next morning, her heart set on accessing the Fund to get Emma on the tour.

When Lidia discovered her student was the chosen recipient, she called Emma at home instead of waiting until the next day at school. Emma described being both shocked and thrilled by the wonderful news. The Fund would cover the majority of Emma’s costs, allowing her to join her classmates in experiencing the iconic marvels of Italy and Greece.

Returning home, Lidia presented at her Renfrew School Board meeting, detailing the tour’s success and its eye-opening ways of learning that reached far beyond classroom walls. Emma spoke at the meeting as well, sharing her initial fears of travelling for the first time, then explaining how she quickly overcame them. She described her newfound confidence and mused that, though she was originally more excited about Greece, she left especially awe-struck by Italy.

Emma, like other EF student travellers, returned to her school even more impassioned to help others see the world. A first-time Group Leader, Lidia now plans to take more students on our tours. The ancient empires of Greece and Rome left an undeniable mark on the modern world, and with help from a caring teacher, an indelible imprint on this deserving student.

Courageous students like Emma remind us why we at EF do what we do. Committed teachers like Lidia inspire us to celebrate their pivotal roles in shaping young lives. From Florentine artworks to the Oracle of Delphi, Lidia and her students found a connection to the ancient world and how it served as a bridge to their future paths.

Are you inspired to share your love of travel with your class?

Are you inspired to share your love of travel with your class?

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