English Language Fellow Trinidad Hernandez was selected as a winner of the U.S. Department of State Alumni Thematic International Exchange Seminars (TIES) grant competition for small grants up to $10,000. TIES grants are federally-funded seminars that provide alumni of State Department exchange programs the opportunity to research important regional issues and develop community projects in-country to address them.

Fellows often get to work on or create projects that go far beyond English language teaching in the classroom. Based on Hernandez’s experience as a Fellow in Sri Lanka, he proposed a project focused on breaking the stigma and silence surrounding health issues. He is using the grant to develop a program that provides young Sri Lankan teachers with tools and strategies to promote more open communication about public health issues.

“Partnering with professional Sri Lankan educators and counselors, the ‘Teacher Communication Project’ is rooted in a sensitive approach to challenging cultural norms, and equips young educators with the information and support to be promoters of good public health in their institutions and communities,” according to a Medium article about Hernandez’s project. Read more about Hernandez’s winning proposal here.

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