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Kansas family creates fund to support international travel for youth


Eula Mae and Don Goodfellow, standing in front of their house

The family of Don Goodfellow and the late Eula Mae Goodfellow has contributed to a fund that supports international travel for Kansas youth. | Download this photo.

Kansas family creates fund to support international travel for youth

The fund honors the legacy of former Lyon resident Eula Mae Goodfellow

November 30, 2022

By Pat Melgares, K-State Research and Extension news service

MANHATTAN, Kan. The family of the late Eula Mae Goodfellow of Lyons, Kan. has donated to a fund that will support opportunities for Kansas youth to travel internationally, honoring one of Eula Mae’s lifelong passions.

Emily Page, vice president of Kansas International 4-H Youth Exchange (IFYE), said the Goodfellow family gift will begin a partnership between IFYE and the Kansas 4-H Foundation to create a $25,000 scholarship fund for youth interested in international . travel through 4-H programs.

Eula Mae was a beloved member of the IFYE family and a shining example of how international travel can change lives, said Dana Hinshaw, treasurer of the Kansas IFYE Association.

According to the USA IFYE Association, IFYE was founded after World War II as young Americans perceived the need for greater international understanding and cooperation. Youth in the US live and work with host families in another country, while youth from abroad come to the United States to live with host families for an equal amount of time.

The program was originally known as the International Youth Farm Exchange.

Participating youth and the host family learn about each other’s culture by participating in the daily lives of the host families, promoting peace through understanding, Page said.

She added that 2023 will mark the 75th year of IFYE exchange trips. More than 4,000 Americans have lived in 116 countries, while a similar number of young people from those countries have come to the United States, she said.

Eula Mae Goodfellow was one of them, taking part in an exchange trip to Belgium in 1955, where she lived with four host families, two French-speaking and two Flemish-speaking.

One of her host families had dairy cows, so she enjoyed bottle-feeding the calves and helping her host mother make butter and cheese, said her husband Don Goodfellow, who recalls letters from Eula Mae in which she described the experience her. He never complained about the difficult living conditions and always had something positive to say.

The couples story began shortly before Eula Maes IFYE experience; Don proposed to her two weeks before he left for Belgium and before his departure for a year-long commitment with the International Volunteer Service program in Iraq.

Throughout her life, Eula Mae was a travel enthusiast planning many family vacations, Don said. The couple attended numerous national and international IFYE conferences, as well as mission trips, disaster relief cleanups, group tour vacations, and motorcycle excursions.

Eula Mae was an abundance of energy, never met a stranger, loved to travel and practiced hospitality generously, Don said.

The family gift includes her surviving children: Daughters Kristen Higgens of Beatrice, Neb.; and Teresa (Joel) Miller of St. John, Kan.; as well as eight grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.

A fund has been established through the Kansas 4-H Foundation for those who wish to support the endowed scholarship. More information is available online at (reference Kansas IFYE Association Endowment Fund #06-4925).

More information is also available by calling Jennifer Pfortmiller with the Kansas IFYE Association at 620-786-5845, or by emailing [email protected]




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