7:30 PM

First Official Fundraising Effort!

On Saturday I had a garage sale to raise money for my AFS exchange! I raised about $100 and was so happy that I had friends who came and supported me!! I made a sign explaining that everything people bought would help pay for my AFS exchange to Japan. I made little origami lotuses to put on it as well! ^_^ I am still saving all of the money I make at work...not spending a penny of it! I hope I'm able to do a bake sale at my school as well, I think that would be really lucrative during lunch time! 

3:50 PM

My Journey to Japan

Hello, my name is Melissa Scherrer and I am a senior at Parkway South high school in St. Louis, Missouri. I have recently applied to study abroad in Japan for a year through AFS (American Field Service) Intercultural Programs. 

I have been studying Japanese for four years and have had a passion for it since I began. I am so enamored with Japanese culture and its people and studying in Japan is my dream! I cannot think of anything else I would rather do! Being able to study in Japan for a year will help me become a more fluent Japanese speaker, and will expand my horizons greatly. I know that this exchange will provide me with a deep understanding of the Japanese way of life that I couldn't attain through textbooks or the internet. I find it difficult to put into text just how passionate I am about Japan. Going to Japan has been my dream for so long, I cannot believe I am so close to reaching it. I am confident that studying in Japan will help me become a better person by expanding my global understanding. It is so important to experience other cultures to truly understand them, and I am so thankful to have this opportunity!

As a senior in high school, I am aware that studying in Japan as a high school student is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and this is my last chance to take it! I am currently working part-time to help fund my Japan exchange, and am an active member of Japanese Club at my school. I will soon be involved with German Club and National Art Honors Society as well! I also enjoy reading, watching movies, listening to music, painting, drawing, and studying Japanese and German, of course! Every year, I enjoy volunteering at the St. Louis Japanese Festival with my Japanese teacher and other students to help raise funds for the Suwa Sister City Committee. Each year since my freshman year, I have hosted a Japanese student for a week. I have seen firsthand how much it affects them, and how amazing the experience of hosting and being an exchange student is!

By creating this blog, I hope to help raise money so that I can fulfill my dream of studying in Japan. Through the generosity of my family and others, (and my college savings), I only need to raise about $3000. This will hopefully help cover the cost of living in Japan. I have many ideas for fundraisers that will hopefully happen soon, and I am having a garage sale this weekend to raise money! Thank you so much for your interest in helping me achieve my dream of going to Japan. I will be so grateful to any amount of money that you can donate; no amount is too small! Anything that you can donate is greatly appreciated!!  Please be a part of this awesome adventure with me! Click on the ChipIn! gadget on the top right of this blog to help me with my journey, by making a secure non tax-deductible donation. I would greatly appreciate it if you could forward my blog to anyone else who you think might be interested in sponsoring my AFS experience by forwarding the link http://melissasjapanjourney.blogspot.com/. Thank you so much!

Sincerely, 
Melissa