Rosie Westerbeck

HRH has made a big impact on my life. in 2017 I joined Award USA as a participant. In 2018 I received my Gold Award. In 2020 I began work as an Alumni Award Leader and now I get to mentor participants from across the United States through this great program!

My Gold Residential Project was in Cyprus, where I worked with international students from Kuwait who were also on their Award journeys.

This program helped me start my own nonprofit, the Red Wagon Campaign. Because of the incredible support from Award USA staff, my nonprofit went on to receive many accolades: the Ohio School Board’s Humanitarian of the Year Award, National Points of Light Honoree, the Ohio Senate Outstanding Citizen Recognition, and numerous others.

While I was a participant in the Award, I got to travel a lot and meet people from across the world. Something I deeply cherish are the moments I got to spend with other participants who come from completely different background than me. Although we have different lives, we all came together for the same purpose: our Awards. Through that, I was able to learn about other countries and their traditions, as well as form some of the best friendships I could ever imagine.

This program helped me to become #WorldReady by taking me out of my comfort zone of small town living, and bringing me into the world at large.

I specifically remember traveling to Cyprus all by myself to complete my Residential Project. I learned a lot and experienced some great moments, and one of my most proud takeaways from the trip is the fact that I ventured out on my own. I traveled over 24 hours there, and 37 hours back. Navigated my way around the Vienna, Chicago, London, and Cyprus airport! I even toured around parts of Polis, Cyprus on my own. Being 20 years old and doing this crazy adventure alone, I am very proud of that. I don’t think I could have done that if it wasn’t for The Award challenging me to do so!

Thank you HRH for the DofE Program!