JustWorld Ambassador Lisa Nooren recently surprised everyone when she won the €500,000 Longines Grand Prix CSI5* at La Coruña. Not only was she the youngest competitor in a lineup of top riders and only one of a few clear, but she made her win even more special by sharing it with others. The talented young rider donated part of her winnings to support students at JustWorld partner project in Guatemala, Los Patojos.
“Very often, with the holiday season upon us, for many people the end of year is a time for reflection and for giving back. With the spirit of giving in mind, I also wanted to do my part and that is why I have decided to donate part of the prize. The money will be going to JustWorld’s partner project Los Patojos, which my sister visited last October and which I hope to visit myself in 2016.”
Lisa’s generosity will help support an exciting initiative at Los Patojos. Last year, Los Patojos’ new school was recognized by the government as a full-time, alternative education program for students in Jocotenango, Guatemala, located just outside of Antigua. The class of sixth graders who graduated now has the opportunity to continue studying at Los Patojos as the first class of seventh grade students!
During an interview, Lisa shared more on her perspective for giving to Los Patojos and her experience.
JW: What was your thought process behind your decision to donate part of your prize money?
LN: Following my sister’s trip to the Los Patojos project in Guatemala, and seeing the photos of the people working in the project and especially the effect it had on the children there really inspired me to do something for the project as well. When I went to this horseshow, in La Coruna, I never expected to win. I really felt a desire to share the joy of winning with others and be able to do something with my own money for these kids really made the whole experience extra special.
JW: The amount of positive reactions were overwhelming, did you expect this? How did it make you feel?
LN: I never expected it to get the attention that it did, but I am happy that people responded positively to it and I just hope that it inspires others to do something that can help those who need it more than us.
JW: What do you hope or think this initiative might achieve?
LN: I sincerely hope that the project is able to continue to grow and continue their work helping those who need it the most, and I hope that the act goes further than just a donation, but inspires others to think of different ways to give something back to people who need it more.
“To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Congratulations again Lisa and thank you, and your family, for your support of our mission.