By TIM CLEVELAND
For the second time in her young life, Lexi Denney will be taking a trip outside the United States when she travels to Hedmark, Norway.
The Canfield High School freshman will be abroad as part of a program called Children’s International Summer Village (CISV) from June 29 through July 20.
“I am so ecstatic because I know I’m going to be making a lot of friends,” Lexi said. “I’m going to interact with people from all over the world in international friendship.”
According to its website [cisvusa.org], CISV is a “global community of dedicated volunteers, creating opportunities for all ages to experience the excitement and enrichment of cultural diversity through our educational programs. We are founded on our belief that peace is possible through friendship – and that the real difference can be made by starting with children.”
Denney’s plane ticket is being funded by her parents, while the other expenses will be paid through donations to CISV.
The purpose of the trip is for the participants from different countries to live together in a diversity village. There are seven other countries that will be represented – Brazil, Columbia, France, Italy, Phillippines, Portugal and Sweden.
They will discuss how to make things better for other people through acceptance.
Students from nine different countries will be participating. Each country will have four delegates plus a group leader. They will cook all their meals and clean together.
The other three delegates from the United States are Ian DeGaten from Niles, Drew Klein of Pittsburgh and Lucy Kodish from Colorado. The group leader is Kevin Li from Rootstown.
Denney said she’s a little nervous about the trip but she feels she will gain many benefits from going.
“I’m a little nervous being away from home but it’s going to benefit me when I get older,” she said. “I feel like it’s going to give me a better outlook on everybody I meet and to have open mind.”
In preparation for the trip, the group meets on Skype to discuss everything that needs to be done to ensure the trip is a success.
“I think it’s amazing,” Denny’s mother Becky Denney said. “This is actually her second trip [through CISV]. When she was 11 she went to Montreal. She loves it.”
“I remember meeting so many amazing people who accepted me for me,” Lexi said.