Meet Emmaculate, one of the beneficiaries of a TIES Kenya University Scholarship. As you can probably tell from her photo, Emma is studying nursing. After her first two semesters at school, she was on a practical rotation for four months and has recently returned to her studies at Pwani University on the outskirts of Mombasa.
Emma’s desire to study nursing was prompted by her family circumstances; at the time when she began her schooling, her father lost his sight and was no longer able to work. Her mother has supported the family of four children on her own since then by running a small kiosk. Emma’s older sister is out of school, but she hopes to be able to help her two younger siblings complete their schooling once she graduates.
In Kenya, students do not get to choose which program nor university that they will attend. Admission to publicly funded universities is via placement to whatever degree program and school has places available (unless their family can afford the tuition for private placement). Unfortunately, Emma was “called” to Pwani University, over 800 kilometres from her home town (almost the entire width of Kenya). That’s over a 13-hour bus ride away!
Sadly, near the end of Emma’s first semester, her father suddenly passed away and she made that journey home for his funeral and then back again in time to write her exams. The determination of Emma and ALL of the TIES scholarship beneficiaries to improve their lives through education is inspiring!
TIES currently grants annual scholarships to eight young women attending university in Kenya, and to five indigenous Mayan girls attending secondary school in the Sarstun region of Guatemala. You may have seen profiles of some of the other girls and young women that TIES supports on Facebook:
- Maria, a grade 11 student in Guatemala: see Facebook post
- Yolanda, a grade 9 student in Guatemala: see Facebook post
- Sharon, in second year in Counselling Psychology at KHU, Kenya: see Facebook post
In order to fund our scholarships, we depend upon financial support for our projects from individual donors and foundations. We receive no government funding except for a small Canada Summer Jobs grant for a part-time summer student here in Canada.
We have sponsorship opportunities for monthly support of young women like those above!
$39/month will sponsor a high school student for one year.
$100/month will (on average) sponsor a Kenyan university student for one year.
NowLights at JOTT
The NowLight is a human- or solar-powered generator. It provides light and USB charging. Pulling the cord of the NowLight for one minute will provide enough energy for two hours of light or a fifteen-minute phone call! In 2021, TIES worked alongside S.H.A.R.E. and Ak’ Tenamit to deliver and monitor NowLights for students in the villages of Sarstún, Guatemala, to provide adequate lighting and charge school devices so that they could do homework and submit online assignments without having to walk many hours to a charging port.
Jamboree on the Trail (JOTT) is an annual day for the World Scout Movement to hike and enjoy nature together. In May, TIES Director Wendy and TIES volunteer Sophie attended JOTT at Belcarra Park. It rained but there were still over 250 Beavers, Cubs and Scouts who came out for a hike and lunch!
Wendy and Sophie brought a TIES display board to JOTT and performed demonstrations of a NowLight unit. They even managed to give away a few bottles of hand sanitizer! Thank you to Sophie and Wendy for spending their time spreading the word about the NowLight. And thank you to Scouting for hosting such a fun event for the community. For more information on the NowLight project, visit our website NowLight project page.
And if you’re wondering why Wendy and Sophie were giving away hand sanitizer, it’s because TIES received a donation of 6,474 bottles of hand sanitizer earlier this year from the Government of Canada. We gave it all away for free to community organizations, with a request for a donation to help support TIES projects. Details of the hand sanitizer giveaway are on our website.
Kenya: Back to School This Fall!
In August of 2021, TIES selected eight students to receive the Kenya University Scholarship. The scholarship covers the students’ tuition, accommodation, food costs, and frequently transportation, as well as additional costs required for the students’ programs such as laptops.
Now, one year later, the students are preparing to return to school. Without financial assistance, they may not have had the chance to attend their first year of university; now, they are gearing up to attend their second year! (Actually, three of the eight never left school for the long break”, instead staying for a third semester in order to accelerate their progress toward their degree.) These deserving, intelligent, and passionate young women will be empowered through their education to give back to their communities, continuing the cycle of empowerment to future generations. TIES is so proud of these hardworking young women and their dedication to their education.
We are pleased to assist these young women achieve their educational and career goals by granting them the TIES Scholarship.
Thank you to AVSI, an NGO operating in 39 countries including Kenya, and Sarah Wanjiru, our Kenyan representative. AVSI Kenya works with over 900 schools in 26 counties and the Dadaab refugee camp to help children most in need. Sarah, as a Kenyan native and a former AVSI sponsorship recipient herself, is honoured to help empower other underprivileged Kenyans through her work with the TIES Kenya Scholarship. TIES would not have been able to effectively organize and monitor these scholarships without this local assistance in Kenya.
Pop Cans to Scholarships Fundraiser
To help fund our education projects in developing countries, TIES has organized a bottle drive! (Only for BC residents right now.) Turn your pop cans into scholarships for students around the world!
It’s easy to participate – simply drop off your recyclable containers to any Return-It Express Depot and directly donate the refund of your recyclable containers to TIES’s Return-It account.
Enter our phone number (604-474-0184) at the label printing kiosk at any Return-It Express Depot. Select the number of bags you are dropping off and print the labels. Tag each bag with a label and then leave the bags in the designated Express drop-off area. The refund will be automatically deposited into the TIES donations account.
See our website post to order labels or to find out more information about this fundraiser.
TIES and the Canadian Government –
Last month, TIES had its one-year anniversary as a registered charity in Canada. As a registered charity, donors may receive an income tax receipt for their donations made to our projects.
The Canadian government provides many more significant benefits to the charity sector, including:
- Direct support of the charitable sector with funding of $10.7 billion (in 2020).
- Indirect support, such as providing charities 100% funding of payroll costs under the Canada Summer Jobs program.
- And the federal government even runs a donation program whereby surplus goods are given to Canadian charities totally free!
In order to receive these benefits, each of Canada’s approximately 86,000 charities must send an annual information return and full financials to the CRA’s Charities Directorate and that information is publicly available on the CRA’s list of charities. Here’s the link to the TIES detail page: TIES CRA Information.
Newsletter Sign-up Promotion with Sabai Thai Spa
This August, TIES partnered with Sabai Thai Spa to promote our email newsletter. Every new email sign-up was entered into a chance to win a 90-minute, Pure Serenity Spa gift voucher from Sabai Thai Spa! Our lucky winner was Holly from Coquitlam. Congratulations, Holly!
The prize is transferable to any name, so Holly will get to either enjoy being pampered by Sabai Thai’s expert team or treat a friend or family member to this experience.
If you missed out, don’t worry – there are two ways that you may still enjoy the Sabai Thai experience:
- TIES will be hosting another promotion this winter with the same prize. Watch out for the announcement of the second promo in November or December! If you’re already signed up to our newsletter, contact us to be entered into this draw. And make sure to spread the word to friends who haven’t signed up to our email newsletter yet!
- Sabai Thai Spa has provided an EXCLUSIVE OFFER for TIES newsletter subscribers. Take advantage of this offer before September 30th.
Thank you to Sabai Thai Spa for generously supporting TIES, and to everyone who participated in this promotion!
Stay Up To Date
We recently updated our website Resources page to add ways to keep informed about TIES news and projects.
To receive a monthly summary by email of TIES website posts (only in months with any updates!) just enter your email address:
Questions or need more information? Contact us or call (604) 474-0184.
To support TIES projects: