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More Beavers Without Borders

In our first "Beavers without Borders" post, we gave you a brief overview of the project. Now we will go more in-depth and look at the purpose and vision of the project, the "key players" in the development of the trip, and a look at what the BWOB team has planned next.

Beginning and Vision - Beginning at OSU

Beavers without Borders is a service organization developed by the Oregon State Department of Athletics in collaboration with its alumni programming committee - the Varsity O Leadership Council. Through Beavers without Borders, current and former student athletes take part in domestic and international service trips.

The overall vision of the project is to "Provide a vehicle for OSU student athletes to use the power of sport to make a positive difference in the world and in their communities."

A look at the key players in the BWOB project, upcoming trips, and movie dates after the break

Key Players in Development

Todd Stansbury, Executive Senior Associate Athletic Director, Beavers without Borders Co-Founder

From the BWOB Information page: "Much of this program and its idea are attributed to the vision of Todd. This idea had been in his incubator for some time now, and when the right convergence of people and action came forward this past year, so did the results of the idea. Todd has traveled the world, and understands the importance of international experience in developing student athletes into good citizens and leaders prepared to meet the challenges of globalization."

Marianne Vydra, Senior Associate Athletic Director, Beavers without Borders Co-Founder

From the BWOB Information page: "Marianne has worked tirelessly bringing together the various constituents and campus partners necessary to develop this program. She developed the academic curriculum and coordinated the instruction of the accompanying class for academic credit."

Taylor Kavanaugh, Football Alum ’09, Beavers w/o Borders Co-Founder & Director

From the BWOB Information page: "Taylor has helped provide many of the ideas and concepts in getting Beavers w/o Borders off the ground. Based off of his previous travel & service oriented experience, has also been able to motivate the student athletes to become a part of the action."

Kyle Bjornstad, Basketball Alumn ’09, Beavers w/o Borders Growth & Fundraising Manager

From the BWOB Information page: "Kyle was a member of the trip to Guatemala. After the experience, Kyle was so impacted that he has since then spent many hours working on the business and production of the Guatemala ’11 film screenings. Kyle’s insight has been invaluable in helping provide a larger framework for the program."

Matt Wilcox, OSU Alumn ’09, Director of Film & Video

From the BWOB Information page: "A very good friend of Taylor’s, Matt has played an instrumental role in running all camera work and post production for all the Beaver w/o Borders videos and films."

Michele Justice, OSU International Programs, International Program Liaison

From the BWOB Information page: "It has been a huge help that Beavers w/o Borders has created a strong partnership with the OSU International Programs on campus. Michele and her department have provided and solid and sustainable foundation for future trips with their valuable insight and advice to international based journeys."

Upcoming BWOB Trips

Joplin, Missouri

While in Joplin, the BWOB team will partner with the University of Oregon to respond to the tornado devastation in Joplin. This is a major step in the BWOB initiative as it will bring in other schools and start the rise of service synergy. While in Joplin, they will partner with Habitat for Humanity or some other disaster respose team already in Missouri.

Battnambang, Cambodia

The BWOB team will be constructing a five room hospital in the countryside to serve the village of Battnambang. If enough money can be fundraised, the team will also distribute 50lb bags of rice to over 2,000 families.

Utila, Honduras

The BWOB team will be installing pre-engineered solar panels on local homes and buildings. The villages on the island of Utila have very limited access to electricity, so this is a very important project. The team will also be conducting soccer and basketball camps on the island throughout the project.

Port-au-Prince, Haiti

While in Haiti, the BWOB team will build the Yvenson Bernard School & Community Center, which will be build on Yvenson's family's land in Haiti. It will be one of the first schools to be rebuilt in the area after the massive earthquake that hit Haiti in 2010. It will be a longer project and the site will be frequented by three or four BWOB teams throughout the duration of the project.

Shinshicho, Ethiopia

While in Ethiopia, the team will partner with Holt International who is currently rebuilding a hospital and school in the Shinshicho village.


So, this is all leading up to the fact that you have to go and see the film that Matt Wilcox and Taylor Kavanaugh have put together. The 70-minute film will highlight the team's story of building a home in Guatemala, the immersion with the people there, and the personal change that each athlete witnessed. The showtimes are:

o         Saturday 8/13: Portland Premier Showing – Tiger Woods Theater (Nike Campus)
o         Friday 8/19: Corvallis/Portland Showing (Location TBD)
o         Saturday 8/20: McMenamins Mission Theatre (Portland)
o         Saturday 8/27: Bend High School Audetorium
o         Sunday 8/28: McMenamins Mission Theatre (Portland) * Matinee