By Connor Bradshaw Van Lier Ribbink ’13
When Jack Hutt ’14 and Jack McAndrew ’14 came back from their sophomore trip to Guatemala to visit a Friends of the Orphan’s home for a week, they decided they had to do something more.
What they ended up doing was much more then even they expected.
Hutt and McAndrew were introduced to Friends of the Orphans, a system of homes all around South America started to shelter, feed and educate orphaned and abandoned children, during their freshman year.
Hutt and McAndrew became further involved when they traveled to Guatemala to visit a home in January 2011.
“It’s just a loving community that you wouldn’t normally expect from children considered orphans,” McAndrew said.
The trip inspired the two juniors to return the love that they felt.
“I wanted to stay connected to the kids in Guatemala, as well as make sure they, and the other nine houses got the necessary supplies they needed,” Hutt said.
So the two friends devised a plan, which then quickly turned into Friends over Seas, a non-profit foundation designed to connect as well as aid the orphans in need.
The group seeks to collect items such as typical articles of clothing, sports equipment and toys.
“We decided to try and collect supplies monthly and send them out to a different house at the end of each month, this started Friends over Seas,” McAndrew said.
Using social media outlets such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, the boys have made their foundation known to the Brophy community and beyond.
“We’ve gotten a lot of donations, we’re actually shipping five boxes in the next week to Guatemala and we’re currently gathering supplies for Nicaragua this month,” McAndrew said.
Although the students are off to a fast start, they are still green to the rigors of running a business.
“It’s definitely a work in progress. We’re still figuring out what works and doesn’t work, but were finding small successes in the donations we get,” McAndrew said.
The juniors are striving to make their foundation personal with students, as well as to drive kids to support the foundation in other ways than just donating by wearing the shirts and other apparel they will be creating in the future.
“We really hope Brophy starts to embrace our idea. Jack and I hope to continue this for life, but we expect younger classmen to pick it up after we leave,” McAndrew said.