Friday, October 8, 2010

Kolfe Scholarship Program

We are working with Gladney to raise support for the Kolfe boys scholarship fund. Please pass the word if you would like to contribute to getting these boys an education. This is the email from Scott Brown, at Gladney and he has asked me to share this with everyone. Help us make a difference in the life of an orphan!

Since the newsletter went out last week, we have had several of you asking more about the scholarship program which Gladney is overseeing for the young men of Kolfe Orphanage and the young women of Kechene Orphanage. Due to the response, I thought it best to provide this information for everyone.

Gladney has been able to assist individuals from the orphanages who show the ability and desire to advance their education through either traditional and/or training instruction. 100% of donations go directly to fund this program and currently we are providing on average $5,875 per month with around 25% coming in from donors like yourselves and 75% coming out of Gladney’s operations. Just recently, we purchased Graduation dresses/suits and shoes for around 20 students totaling $2,760.

When we started the General Ethiopian Scholarship Fund, our intent and desire was to choose young men and women whom Belay (Gladney’s In-Country Representative) and Anbes (Gladney’s Humanitarian Aid Director) have gotten to know and are confident will make full use of the resources given to further their education. Some of them attend public school which does not require school fees, but does require money for school supplies, copies, clothes and transportation. Some donors have asked that their funds go directly to a specific child they met in Ethiopia, but there are many children who are very deserving and capable but may not be as outgoing and connected to adoptive families, thus the reason for a general fund. The average funding which a child is likely to need is anywhere from $400 to $1,000 USD per year. As you can imagine, we would like to see every child with the ability to further their education be given the opportunity to do so.

Tutorial Program:

There have been many successful stories and good news to report. Just a short two years ago, before Gladney became involved, to our knowledge only 1 student from the orphanage made it to University. Gladney then hired high school teachers as tutors for those interested in taking the National Exams. Two years ago of the 8 who took the exam, all passed (4 boys @ Kolfe and 4 girls @ Kechene), which has NEVER happened before in the history of either of those government run orphanages. This past August, the tutors assisted 12 more students and once again ALL 12 passed the National Exam, so another 100% pass rate! Of special significance, one of those students scored within the top 10% of everyone taking the exam in all of Ethiopia, and he is excited to start attending Medical School.

Scholarship Program:

The scholarship program was commenced on September 30, 2008. Since then, we have had over 200 students involved with studies such as medical science, construction technology, hairdressing/beauty profession, food preparation/hospitality, information technology, language, teaching profession and governmental institutions. With our limited staffing resources, the donations go into a pool of funding for ALL scholarships. We are not set up to provide monthly follow-up as other sponsorship organizations provide. With 100% of the donations going into this pool and more than 65 young men and women waiting for financial assistance, we do not feel it a good use of funds to spend our limited staff resources to provide monthly follow up. As more funding is provided and more young people continue to show the desire and ability to continue their education, whether through conventional schooling or trade school, they will be added to the program.

If any of you are interested, you may restrict your donation by making your check out to The Gladney Center for Adoption; c/o Ethiopian Adoption Program; 6300 John Ryan Dr., Fort Worth, TX 76132-4122. In the memo line write “Ethiopian Educational Scholarship”.

A special thank you goes out to each and every one who is making a difference in the lives of these children. Gladney is humbled to play a small role.

J. Scott Brown

EVP/Managing Director of the African Programs

The Gladney Center

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