Sustaining a Life of Service

I am designed to show God’s love in action," wrote 24-year-old Krista Hunt Ausland in her application for voluntary service with Mennonite Central Committee. The following year Krista died in a bus accident in Bolivia. She was serving in a women’s cooperative with MCC.

Krista’s legacy didn’t stop with her last breath. In 1999, family and friends formed a socially committed organization in her memory. Krista’s parents, Jim and Linda Hunt, direct the Krista Foundation for Global Citizenship. The foundation’s board members—drawn from around the world—have launched a mentoring community to encourage and sustain young adults involved in service in developing countries and America’s inner cities. One foundation project is to provide volunteers with talent and interest grants in Krista’s name.

Most voluntary service organizations provide the bare minimum of resources and encourage simple living. Many volunteers don’t have funds to enhance career and life skills during their stipend-based projects. Krista Colleague grants encourage the efforts of volunteers and foster a worldwide community of service-minded mentors.

For example, Krista had graduate school plans after her commitment to MCC. She wanted to enroll in a University of Washington correspondance course in economics while still in Bolivia. The foundation’s grants can cover the costs of such classes.

The Krista Foundation also recognizes a need for emotional release from intense Third World and inner city environments. Creative cultural activities bring vitality back to the volunteers and help them share new ideas and energy with the community.

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Sojourners Magazine September-October 2000
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