The Follow Your Dream Foundation began as a vision and dream for Nancy Svendsen. At an early age, Nancy recognized the importance of daring to follow your own unique path, whether easy or seemingly beyond reach. As a voracious young reader, Nancy was influenced by women writers and stories of courageous women. They enthralled her. Nancy deeply admired her mother who lifted herself out of rural life in Iowa to secure an education and earned a living as an educator. Nancy was inspired by her mother’s efforts to live a bigger life outside of her rural boundaries which ultimately influenced Nancy in all of her personal and professional pursuits.
The Follow Your Dream Foundation was born after Nancy learned of the story of Pasang Lhamu Sherpa from her brother-in-law, Dorjee Sherpa. Pasang’s story encompasses struggle, triumph and tragedy in her life and on Mt. Everest. Pasang’s legacy in Nepal lives on as a heroine to her own children as well as the women of Nepal who seek a bigger, better, different life. It became a calling to Nancy to tell Pasang’s story to an audience beyond the borders of Nepal. The Foundation platform was built to help support the effort. The underlying premise of the Foundation is that courage is found deep within every woman and the sharing of one woman’s story may be the catalyst for another to reach within themselves and pursue their dreams. The name of the Foundation is inspired by one of Pasang’s lasting messages, to “follow your dream”.
The board of the Follow Your Dream Foundation is comprised of friends and colleagues who share Nancy’s vision. The organization will seek out sponsors and projects to promote through their not-for-profit work.