In 2004, Shin Fujiyama went on a weeklong service trip to Honduras. He was a 20-year old college student who had no idea that those few days would shape the next ten years of his life.
He never imagined that he’d be running an orphanage and school, build a village, and be named a CNN Hero a few years later.
After that initial trip, Shin began returned to Honduras during every break to learn more about the country, its challenges, and its people.
Back on campus he began raising money for various charities and orphanages in Honduras.
His ﬁrst penny drive barely brought in twenty dollars. He almost quit that day, but his friends encouraged him to keep trying. So he began organizing bake sales, car washes, and yard sales with his roommates.
Soon, they began to raise more money. Other students began to accompany Shin on his trips to Honduras. Since then, nearly 100 universities and high schools in the U.S. have started a chapter of Students Helping Honduras. Thousands of volunteers have traveled to Honduras and collectively raised millions of dollars.
After graduating from college in 2007, Shin and his sister Cosmo decided to start Students Helping Honduras, a 501 (c) 3 non-proﬁt organization.
In 2009, Shin was named a CNN Hero and was featured on CNN, CNN en Español, Larry King Live, and national news stations in Honduras for his work in the country. Shin currently lives in Honduras, working as the Executive Director and coaching the village soccer team at Villa Soleada.