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Greenwich's Global Citizens Initiative Summit Gets $50K From Rakuten

Greenwich's Global Citizens Initiative is launching the August 2014 Global Citizens Summit for Youth program. Program contributions include a $50,000 grant from the Rakuten, Inc.
Greenwich's Global Citizens Initiative is launching the August 2014 Global Citizens Summit for Youth program. Program contributions include a $50,000 grant from the Rakuten, Inc. Photo Credit: Contributed

GREENWICH, Conn. -- Greenwich's Global Citizens Initiative (GCI) is launching the August 2014 Global Citizens Summit for Youth program.

The program, hosted at the Harvard University Faculty Club, involves 24 high school scholars from around the globe who will gather to discuss global citizenship with a focus on “Fairness and Freedom,” according to a press release. Program contributions include a $50,000 grant from Rakuten, Inc., a matching-grant from Cook Pine Solutions LLC as well as additional gifts from individuals and global organizations, according to the release.

“As a global company, our ability to grow and execute depends on our ability to attract and develop a workforce that can understand multiple languages and cultures while having a strong moral compass. Therefore, we feel the responsibility to nurture our next generation by supporting personal, hands-on educational organizations like GCI, which is dedicated to growing Global Citizens,” said Hiroshi Mikitani, chairman and chief executive officer of Rakuten, Inc.

GCI is a nonprofit founded in 2011 to inspire families, students and educators to adopt a global and holistic approach to education, according to the release.

GCI is partnering with Harvard University and Phillips Exeter Academy faculty volunteers who will lecture and participate in the GCSY discussion sessions.

The summit will incorporate The Good Work Project’s curriculum, a unit of Project Zero at Harvard University that focuses on ethics, engagement and excellence, according to the release.

"In the end, students will have a deeper understanding of cross-cultural cooperation and will leave with self-developed solutions to global issues that they can take back to their local communities," representatives said. "Donor support has allowed the summit to be truly inclusive, with a diverse body of participants from more than ten countries, including India, Ethiopia, China, Japan, Rwanda, Afghanistan, Iran, and the USA."

GCI founder Yumi Kuwana said that the summit  program is designed to spark new ideas and critical thinking.

“We decided to make the focus of the program Freedom and Fairness because these concepts mean different things to different people,” said Kuwana. “In the countries these scholars represent, the intrinsic meaning of these terms varies. Advancing a dialogue between cultures helps nurture this next generation to be more globally aware.”

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