Soufriere, St. Lucia – In October, the Soufriere Foundation announced that 260 deserving students were the recipients of its annual scholarship/bursary programme. The successful scholarship awardees received a monetary contribution towards the purchase of books, school supplies and tuition cost and bursary awardees received school books.
The distribution of bursaries and the giving of scholarships by the Soufriere Foundation has become a customary annual undertaking. The program which began as a fledgling undertaking in 2007 has gradually grown to become the biggest scholarships program in Saint Lucia with average annual expenditure in the last three years of over EC$190,000. To date, the organisation has awarded nearly EC$1.1 million to approximately 1,618 students. This year a total of 260 students at the primary, secondary and tertiary school levels became recipients of either bursaries or scholarships.
In a formal ceremony held at the Cool Breeze Conference Room on the September 25th, 2015 to both recognize outstanding performances of students at the CXC and Common Entrance levels and the disbursement of scholarship awards and bursaries, the chairman of the Scholarship’s Committee, Mr. Kennedy Jean, stressed on the importance of education. “We the Board of Directors along with the Management of the Soufriere Foundation recognize the importance of education in our society. For that reason we will continue to invest in you. In return, we expect you to work diligently towards attaining your academic goals,” he stated.
The District Education Officer for District 8, Mrs. Valentia Charlery, in her brief remarks expressed the Ministry of Education’s gratitude for the organization’s undying contribution and support for education in the community. “I am privileged
to work in a district where so much support is given to the schools, when all seems lost; hope is given by the Soufriere Foundation,” she said.
In his summary of the Soufriere Foundation’s scholarship program, Project and Operations Manager, Mr. Dominic Alexander, spoke about the program’s goals and ultimate focus. He stated, “For us it is a flagship social program that is designed to create a cadre of skilled persons that are capable of competing on the national market for jobs. More specifically, the program was designed to allow students and parents from disadvantaged households to be able to obtain education without having to worry about the burden of finances and costs.”
The Soufriere Foundation is a non-profit company located in Soufriere. Its mandate is to undertake social, cultural, human resource, tourism and infrastructure development in the Soufriere area. The organization which was established in 1993 generates revenues from its operational sites: the Sulphur Springs Park, Gros Piton Nature Trail, Comfort Centre, Soufriere jetties and 88.5 Soufriere FM.