by Kevon Browne
St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): Malakhi Ferguson, Public Relations Officer for the St. Kitts National Youth Parliament Association (SKNYPA), spoke about the Ward Hanley Scholarship and Mentorship program during Island Tea on August 4.
The program’s initial launch was August 2020 and was named after the late Desmond Eli Ward and the Hon. Dr. Geoffrey Hanley. Now they are back again for the second cohort of the program as they saw the importance of the scholarship program, especially during this pandemic.
The program awards five students transitioning from public or private primary schools to public high schools focusing on assisting the first-year high school students.
“It is challenging. The first year of high school is a different ballgame to primary school… [the program] is basically to aid in economic support, and we notice that [it is not] enough just to give monetary contributions to these recipients. We decided to go beyond that, which is our mentorship program,” explained Ferguson.
“The mentors are “sknyparian”… each mentee has one mentor. They benefit from certain things such as training, conflict resolution, [and] educational training. They [can] ask the [mentor] anything. It’s way more than assisting the mentee with their school work… [we] help in their character development throughout that time.”
SKNYPA also decided to keep supporting the students from their first cohort through the entire five years of high school.
“When [the program] was first launched, we wanted to keep these persons for just a year… the first year of [their high school career], but we have decided for the first cohort that we are going to keep them through their five years of highschool… they’d, of course, get maybe a reduced monetary contribution but they would still have the benefit of having the support of their mentor throughout [those five years].”
Students must have attained a term average of a minimum of 75 percent
Be an active member of a local community group.
Proof of parent(s)/guardian(s) economic need
Members and direct families of the members of the Association are not eligible.
Two references are needed: one teacher and one community group leader.
Nominations for the scholarship close on August 06, 2021.
You can watch the rest of the interview with the SKNYPA Rep here: