The weight of hope

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There are 2 days left until the scholarship applications close for 2017. The deadline is midnight GMT on Saturday 4th November 2017. We have had an overwhelming response: 525 hopeful young people from at least 10 countries are looking to Watipa for support for their studies, hopes and dreams for the future.

IMG_0971.jpgOn the one hand, the huge response indicates that we have tapped into a clear need by providing locally based, flexible and immediate support through the Watipa scholarships offer. As far as we are aware, there are not other scholarship programmes quite like ours. It also shows that there are a lot of deserving young leaders who have a vision to develop their communities, yet who unfortunately are lacking resources and support to continue their education.

IMG_0991On the other hand,  I lose sleep at night worrying about how we can raise more funds to provide more scholarships – so that fewer applicants will be disappointed this year. Last year, we had 125 applications in total from 14 countries, which was daunting in itself. I wrote about the responsibility of hope at about the same time last year, and in the end we were able to provided some support for 36 or about one quarter of the applicants. This year, with almost 4 times as many applicants, it is hard not to feel heavy, weighed down with the knowledge that many (the majority) of the applicants will be disappointed this year.

IMG_0960We are a small and mightily ambitious programme, only in our second year, and the weight of the hopes of the young applicants is motivating us to grow bigger, better resourced and equipped to offer more of these kind of scholarships in the future.

IMG_0988 (1)It is not too late to donate to the scholarship fund – we have a crowdfunding campaign open now, and will be launching a new fundraising website next week as well. Please consider adding your support, click through to the crowdfunding campaign and give the gift of education this year.

100% of the funds we receive go directly to support the students. We are unlike most charitable organisations, in that our management and overhead costs are covered through the social enterprise and the time given in kind by advisors and founding members to review and administer the scholarships. That means every cent, penny or centime donated goes directly to the beneficiaries.

Will you help lift the weight of hope from our shoulders and give the gift of education this year?

Lucy Stackpool-Moore

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