The Jomo Kenyatta Foundation has offered scholarship to bright and needy secondary school students since its inception in 1966. However, some of the students find it difficult to join university due to financial constraints.
While the Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) comes in handy, the students are required to seek fees for the first semester. This is the point where their tribulations begin.
2020 came with some of the most unprecedented realities in recent times by way of Covid-19. A sizeable number of guardians were left bruised courtesy of job losses, yet most of the universities were at the time progressing with their academic calendars and required students to pay the requisite first semester fees before they could register for online classes.
Sample the following scenarios three such scholarship beneficiaries found themselves in:
Brian Ochieng Odhiambo: An alumnus of Mbita Secondary School, Brian was the first in a family of 10 to achieve that feat. His aspiration was to go a step further and join the university having scored a C+ in his Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education. The problem arose when his elder brother, who was his sole benefactor, could not raise the requisite amount. Brian had been admitted to Moi University’s School of Information to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Media Studies.
Erastus Apwacho: He was brought up by a single mother and is a resident of Mukuru slums in Nairobi. He scored an impressive Grade A in KCSE and was set to join the University of Nairobi to pursue a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery degree. When Covid-19 hit, his mother could no longer get casual jobs for family upkeep as had been the case before. Putting food on the table became a real nightmare. The idea of fees for her son’s education was the last of the poor lady’s dreams. The country, and indeed the world, stood on the verge of losing a promising surgeon.
Brandon Kimutai: His is a case of resilience personified. Brandon had on numerous occasions dropped out of school to assist his parent look for money to keep the family going. Eventually he sat his KCSE, scored B+ grade, and was admitted to the Technical University of Kenya to undertake a Bachelor of Technology (Community and Public Health) degree.
To say the academic future of these three brilliant youths was bleak is an understatement. Luckily, help came courtesy of the JKF Scholarship Beneficiaries Association.
They could now comfortably step into the campuses of choice and begin the academic journey to their future.
While expressing his gratitude for the kind gesture, Brian had this to say: “This is to pass my gratitude to my fellow JKF alumni for the positive response towards my fee payment. I must admit I am very much grateful and I owe you a lot. You have really rekindled a bright light of hope in my life which had somehow gone dim. I pray that God may continue granting you guys a loving and caring heart to assist others also.”
Thank you to the JKF Scholarship Beneficiaries Alumni through the JKF Scholarship Beneficiaries Association for their wonderful work of uplifting others in need.