In 2014, we asked visitors and volunteers if they would be willing to provide a high school scholarship to a graduating primary school student.
Not all made it – some lost sponsors due to changing finances, some had babies, some moved to other places, some simply could not overcome the many challenges – academic and personal – that are thrown at high school aged children. But last weekend, we had the privilege of sharing in the joy and pride that three of our generous donors felt as they watched their scholarship students graduated.
We are grateful to the many, many people who have supported these students and helped them succeed.
Small change for big change
Faye and Dan have been visiting Holy Cross School for many years. With the help of her church, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Valparaiso, IN, they gave scholarships to Antu and Kenya.
Her church congregation donated their spare change to provide the scholarships. “For each of the four years, we set up collections of spare change. The first was ‘Small Change for a Big Change’. This was followed by ‘Change is in Your Pocket’ and ‘Change for the Future.’ Finally is was ‘Help Change the Tassel.'”
Faye was teaching a writing lesson when she first met Antu. “Most students began writing immediately, but not him. He sat quietly, scratched his head and chewed on his pencil. Later, when reading through the essay, I found that his was exceptional.”
Kenya’s sponsorship was due to her evident potential but also her sweet nature and winning smile. She was engaging and showed perseverance with her school work.
As they were regularly travelling to Belize, Faye and Dan were fortunate enough to be able to see both Antu and Kenya almost every year and got to know their families. When Kenya left the island, Faye and Dan continued to support her through school on the mainland.
Faye and Dan timed their trip this year to coincide with graduation. “Antu’s graduation from SPHS was very special to us. I was overwhelmed and moved to tears when he handed me a rose in thanksgiving for sponsoring him. He and Kenya are so very special to our entire congregation.”
“Antu and Kenya’s parent have always expressed their deep gratitude for sponsoring their children and have become friends we expect to have long after their children graduate from college. Antu intends to go to Jr.College in Corozal to study science and Kenya plans to go to Sacred Heart Jr. College in San Ignacio.”
Faye and Dan stayed on in Belize for a week following graduation to help out at the school, and Antu and Kenya lent a hand.
Persevering through tough times
The first step to medical school
Mr Bob of St Luke’s Episcopal Church in Durham, North Carolina has been on many mission trips to Holy Cross. Mr Bob noticed Arianie’s potential when he was doing math for Standard 5. He wanted to see her fulfill it.