LOCAL student, Mark Robinson, has been given
a financial boost by the Rotary Club of Lisburn, which will
allow him to travel to South America for a year to work with
Mark was granted a £500 bursary by the local
club, which will go someway towards the £6,000 he must raise for
The former Wallace student is currently
studying Spanish at Queens University and is spending his third
year in Mexico City with the charity Latin Link, working in a
children's home with street kids.
Mark first found out about the Rotary bursary
when his brother and friends from First Lisburn Presbyterian
Church applied for the grant last year when they were planning
to travel to Philadelphia with Habitat for Humanity.
After making it through the initial interview
stage, Mark was granted the bursary and gave a presentation to
the Rotarians last week.
Talking about his upcoming visit to Mexico,
Mark said: "I am going to Mexico City to work with street kids.
I will be teaching English and using football to break down
social and language barriers.
"I decided to use the opportunity presented by
my language placement year to work with the chary," explained
Mark. "Last year I spent two months with Latin Link in Ecuador
on their Step Programme and I am hoping that at the end of my
time in Mexico I can go back to Ecuador to visit the project
Mark now has the task of reaching his £6,000
fundraising goal and has a host of events already planned.
"I have made a start on the fundraising and
the Rotary bursary will really help," he said.
"Next week I am planning to run the Lisburn
Half Marathon in a poncho to raise money and I am also planning
to have a variety of events during the summer," Mark added.
Mark has mixed emotions about the trip to
Mexico. "I cannot wait to go," he said. "It is a bit daunting to
be honest as there is a chance I will be living with a family
for a year. It will be an unbelievable experience."
Trevor Guy from the Rotary Club of Lisburn
commented: "The standard of applications for this year's bursary
was exceptionally high. However, Mark was a very worthy winner."