Houlton native raising money for Sri Lanka trip

9 years ago
HOULTON, Maine — Sometimes an opportunity presents itself that is simply too good to resist. Such was the case with Houlton native Becca Crandall.

Crandall, the daughter of Darrell and Jane Crandall, wanted to do something more in the field of psychology so she applied to, and has been accepted into, a program called SLV that sends psychology students and recent psychology grads to Sri Lanka for volunteer work and experience.

Crandall will travel to Sri Lanka for four weeks in March where she will volunteer for half a day in a psychiatric hospital and half a day in a rehabilitation center. In her free time, she will teach English to the children with special needs.

Born and raised in Houlton, Crandall is a 2011 graduate of Houlton High School and a 2015 graduate of the University of Maine, where she obtained a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a focus on child development.

“Everyone always asks ‘what are you going to do after graduation?’”, Crandall said. “My answer was always that I would be attending grad school. Then came my senior year and the need for a year off was necessary. So I moved to Portland and got a great job in my field, but I knew I could be doing more.”

Now living in Portland, Crandall has spent the past seven months working for Spurwink, a nationally accredited non-profit organization that provides a broad range of mental health and educational services for children, adolescents, adults and families. At Spurwink, she works in the residential care division, specializing on children with Autism.

She also works at KidsPeace, a private charity dedicated to serving the behavioral and mental health needs of children, families and communities.

To make her dream of volunteering in Sri Lanka a reality, Crandall is in the midst of raising money for the trip. She must raise $4,000 for the trip, and has started a “Go Fund Me,” fundraising page online at https://www.gofundme.com/7625t34c.

Crandall said she hope is to put her schooling to use by helping people in a part of the world she has never been before.

“I want to be able to make the most of my experience in Sri Lanka and having the funds to do so will help me accomplish that goal,” she said. “I want to get as much experience helping children as I can. Not only is Sri Lanka a different culture, the children are different and will provide a great learning tool for me.”