Wed | Oct 21, 2020

NGO assists with back-to-school expenses

Published:Saturday | September 26, 2020 | 12:10 AMTamara Bailey/Gleaner Writer
Lanisia Rhoden (front, right), founder of YWOP/YMOP, with the scholarship and grant awardees.
Lanisia Rhoden (front, right), founder of YWOP/YMOP, with the scholarship and grant awardees.

The non-profit organisation Young Men and Young Women of Purpose (YMOP/YWOP) has made the back-to-school financial burden on parents of 12 students a little lighter this year with scholarships and grants ranging from $10,000 to $50,000.

YWOP/YMOP has placed significant emphasis on education and career development for those with limited access to opportunities over the years and continue to spread the love outside the parish of Manchester.

“We received over 650 applications, but we were only able to award eight scholarships and four grants valued at $290,000 to high-school students. This year’s awardees were from nine schools across Jamaica and all had good to excellent academic achievements, admirable leadership skill, involvement in community, and stories that displayed their needs,” said founder of YWOP/YMOP Lanisia Rhoden

The recipients were awarded under the categories of the Board of Directors’ Scholarship, the Founder’s Scholarship, and the Foundation Friends’ Scholarship.

The Board of Directors’ Scholarships were sponsored by the board members and was developed for female students enrolled in high school, vocational or other training institutions who are facing personal or financial need. Six scholars were selected and received $25,000 each towards their school expenses.

The Founder’s Scholarship is funded by Rhoden and is geared towards high-school students in the parishes of Manchester, Clarendon and St Elizabeth.

The scholar in the category receives $50,000 and the grantees receives $10,000 each.

“The Foundation Friends’ Scholarship is named in honour of our donors, Andrene Henry-Morgan, Charlene Mohan, Chaunika Reid, Debbie-Ann Wright, Faithlyn Thompson, Lanisia Rhoden, Lisa Dunn, Rohan Morgan, Simone Tomlinson and Tracian Meikle, who have been friends for 23 years, since first form at Manchester High (MHS). The name is grounded on the longevity and depth of their friendship, although they are now based in different geographical regions. This scholarship is valued at $50,000 and is open only to students who live in Manchester, started MHS at grade seven and are in grades ranging from third to sixth form.”

Upper sixth-form student at Hampton High, Whitney Waysome, who received a scholarship under the Founder’s category, said it could not have come at a better time as her single mother was struggling to make ends meet.

“It was truly a blessing, I was happy I received that scholarship. I cried many times because it was difficult for my mother and there are three of us. I had to sell sweets at school so I could help out,” she said.

Waysome, who wants to become a lawyer, said there were many times when she thought she would have to drop out of school, but God came through for her.