Thu | Dec 8, 2016

SFP's foundation hands over eight scholarships

Published:Friday | October 3, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Olympian Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (centre) and the seven of the eight high-school student athletes who were awarded scholarships from her Pocket Rocket Foundation yesterday. Back row (from left): Board member Bruce James, Nichlolas Haughton (Campion College), Okhalia Buchanan Wolmers High School for Girls), Pierce-Matthew McKenzie (Campion College), Patrick Morgan (Jonathan Grant High), and board members Colleen Montague and Donovan Walker. Front row, from left: Jeffrey Gordon (board member), Zinedine Russell (Convent of Mercy, Alpha), Shadae Grant (St Jago High), Fraser-Pryce, Romae Quarrie (Campion College), and Paula Pinnock (board member).Contributed

Marc Stamp, Gleaner Writer

The Pocket Rocket Foundation awarded eight scholarships to student athletes of several schools during a ceremony at Sagicor in New Kingston yesterday.

Founded by two-time Olympic gold medallist Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce in 2013 when seven scholarships were awarded, this year, the foundation has added one more.

The 2014 awardees for the $50,000 scholarships are: Shadae Grant, a 12 year-old student of St Jago High; Nicholas Haughton, who is an upper sixth form student of Campion College; Patrick Morgan, a 16-year-old student at Jonathan Grant High; Janeek Brown, a 16-year-old student of Wolmer's Girls; Zinedine Russell, a 15-year-old student at Convent of Mercy Alpha; Okhalia Buchanan, a 16-year-old student of Wolmer's Boys; Pierce-Matthew McKenzie, a 15-year-old student of Campion College; and Romae Quarrie, a 17-year-old Campion College student.

"I believe that we are supposed to give back. You are on Earth to inspire others. The true person that I am, I do believe that you have to give to get back," Fraser-Pryce told the students at the brief ceremony.

"It is hard while growing up to find the lunch money and books. I was on that road. We don't choose our circumstances, we were born with it," the Olympic Games gold medallist added.

"I'm a testimony that it is possible, don't worry about the lunch money, books or other things. I want you to think about giving yourself a chance to excel, despite hardship. We are here to inspire others. I want to walk the journey with you. I want you to take this opportunity with both hands.

"It's about giving up your best, that's what I want you to do. It is as simple as that. I want you to continue the cycle by giving back.

"For me, I understand what it is to give. It is all about fostering relationships. I want you to take these cheques and do the best for you. This is an opportunity to make dreams a reality. I want you to fight, and have fun," Fraser-Pryce shared.

Fraser-Pryce is the convenor and chairperson of the foundation. Other board members are Bruce James, Donovan Walker, Jeffrey Gordon, Colleen Montaque, Raphael Walker and Paula Pinnock-McLeod.

The sponsors of the foundation include Nike, Sagicor, Digicel and GraceKennedy.