Ansley Guthrie is a young philanthropist with a passion for graphic design. Last summer, she traveled to Uganda, caring for imprisoned children.
With siblings adopted from China, Ansley has always felt an urge to help children less fortunate than she was growing up. She is amazed at how such a small effort by her family helped her siblings in such a huge way. It also motivated her to help in other ways when given the opportunity. The perfect one presented itself this past summer.
Her godparents live in Uganda and work for Sixty Feet, which is mainly a well-digging service for drought-ridden towns and villages. Ansley explained that they hit water at 60 feet under the ground, hence the name.
The organization has divisions outside of well digging: clothing, food and a few others, including working in children’s prisons. She explained that her godparents are in charge of all the company’s Ugandan operations, so they knew when they needed help. Ansley was eager to help out and to take a trip to Uganda.
The children’s prisons in Uganda are very different than the juvenile correctional facilities in the United States. In Uganda, Ansley said, children can be imprisoned if they beg or simply cannot find their family in public.
Ansley went to work every day in these prisons, giving the children food, water and clothes, and simply being someone they could talk to.
The teenagers and older boys value the conversations, Ansley said. And she admits that her time wasn’t spent in completely selfless action; she loved the conversation and time with the children as much as they did.
Overall, she enjoyed her time in Uganda, and plans to go back in the future.
In addition to her humanitarian endeavors, she is very enthusiastic about art. Ansley said she loves graphic design and hopes to pursue it in the future. Also, she would like to incorporate graphic design into helping less fortunate children. She hopes to create advertising to raise awareness for organizations such as Sixty Feet.
Art and graphic design is very much a part of Ansley’s life at school. She is in AP Art and a member of the Art Club.
AP Art teacher Rebecca Brown says Ansley’s work is “thought provoking and highly original.”
“She enjoys working creatively to produce conceptual works of art that are highly skillful,” Brown said. “Ansley is one of the most considerate students I have ever taught. She is compassionate and generous, and lives out our school’s mission statement in all she does, but especially the part – ‘for others ahead of self.’”
Ansley also is a member of the Whitefield tennis team. She plays number 3 singles, and the team went to regional competition last year. This coming spring, she will captain the varsity girls’ team.
While her college search is well underway, Ansley is sure that she wants to go to college either in New York or Chicago. She says the energy of a big city excites her and draws her in. Also, she is inspired by the constant movement and happening of a large urban area.
This article was reported and written by Sam Wimpfheimer, a student at The Galloway School.