This year we celebrate over 40 years of Legacy International. 

Founded in 1979, as the Institute for Practical Idealism and later known as Legacy International, our work is inspired by our Founder and President,  J.E. Rash’s vision.  Helping people develop and refine the skills to effectively and sustainably address the needs of their societies in a way conducive to their local circumstances requires an emphasis on building long-lasting relationships around shared universal values.

Our work has spanned 105 countries and impacted over 700,000 people.


We have created this 40th Anniversary hashtag to share all our 40th anniversary work. It plays on our name, while looking forward versus backwards in time. What Legacy do you want to create? Follow the hashtag on social media and use it to tag your posts related to Legacy International and our anniversary. 

COMING SOON! Please stay tuned for updates, special events, and celebrations to be announced for 2019

COMING SOON! Global Viewpoints Forum Events

COMING SOON! Volunteer Opportunities 

COMING SOON! 40th Anniversary Celebration

40 Years of the Global Youth Village

  • 1979 – Legacy International founded and Global Youth Village starts
  • 1980’s – Global Youth Village grows, alumni draft honor system, cabins and classrooms built. Youth leadership and cross-cultural relations curriculum developed. Many young people from Israel, Palestine, Northern Ireland, Vietnamese and Cambodian refugees join us. Youth Musicals In Our Hands and Peace Child Middle East produced and performed. Youth Environment and Service program launched. Yes Changing Tides in the Mediterranean Conference in Cordoba Spain. Produced “Planting Seeds for Peace” and “Changing Tides Along the Mediterranean” documentaries – both of these aired on the Discovery Channel. 
  • 1990’s – The Berlin Wall comes down. Anonymous donations coupled with funding from the Open Society Institute brings young people from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Mongolia, Moldova, Czech Republic, Ukraine, Bosnia- Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia to GYV. We take the youth leadership curriculum to NYC schools and Global Youth Village includes more and more young people in environmental and youth engagement activities. Over 300 students from across Nigeria get their first taste of the USA and social responsibility. The Dialogue curriculum begins to go deeper as young people join us from the Balkans. Interfaith Dialogue is a key theme.
  • 2000-2013 – Building bridges to Muslim majority countries. GYV hosts 350 students from Indonesia and 400 students from Iraq. Universal values becomes the bedrock for building common ground. We build stronger partnerships with US organizations such as Summer Search, St Labre Indian School, Centerpole Foundation, Commonwealth Catholic Charities, and North Lawndale School in Chicago. The LivingSidebySide® curriculum (LSBS) provides deep dialogue training and new Training of Trainers Programs are developed and implemented abroad.
  • 2013-2018 – Artist in residence program begins and Charles Williams Vocal Coach comes back to GYV. GYV starts hosting groups of students from Saudi Arabia and expands ESL workshops. Twenty-Six Yemeni refugees join us for 9 weeks in the summer of 2017, as they are unable to return home due to war. GYV teams up with US Embassies in Algeria and Egypt to provide leadership training to Access program graduates. Legacy expands its youth programming off campus with TechGirls, American Youth Leadership Program Cyprus and Social Cohesion exchange with the U.K.
  • 2019 – BUILDING A BRIGHT FUTURE – GYV age span increases to include 19 year olds and a special session added to include 13-14 year olds. We are inviting alumni (over 18) to come and teach short workshops as part of the Global Faces of Leadership anniversary series.

Share your update with us to be featured as part of our history!