Give Thalia, Sahra and Noura a second chance!

Thalia, Sahra and Noura need you! Together with Global Giving, we give you the chance to actively help them achieve their dreams! For any further inquiries, do not hesitate to contact us!

Meet Noura, one of our Second Chance Scholarship recipients

The Asherah Foundation is committed to helping women who have journeyed over rough waters access the education they dream about. Dedicated to empower women from all over the world, we are constantly welcoming your support. Learn more on how our fundraiser has made Noura’ s dream come true by reading her application story!

As a woman from Yemen

As a Yemeni woman who has confronted conflict and war, I am committed to help the Yemen civil society especially children and women for the rest of my life. I have a particular interest in improving the accessibility of helping people learn about community services available to them.

I hope to be able to serve in a social position sometime in the future to help less fortunate and under-represented social groups, such as women who are suffering from discrimination. As a result of my own experiences, I am familiar with the despair and frustration endemic to Yemenis struggling to survive. I am convinced that increasing individuals’ access to education can make the difference between despondency and hope.

Working to become a second chance scholarship recipient

After my break from college, I became more involved in my community by mentoring and volunteering at organizations such as Youth Center & “We can” Project, Volunteers of Yemen, Blind Women Association, the Election Observation Committee. In addition, I worked in a skills development institute for six years, where my passion for this field continued to grow.

I began preparing for my mission by volunteering as an intake coordinator at the National Cultural Center for Youth. Although I had many responsibilities, the role that consumed most of my time and energy was interviewing women and assessing their physical and emotional needs. I also generated an updated resources list that included many organizations from the Taiz, Aden and Ibb areas. By personally contacting each organization I facilitated the communication between the organizations and the women that needed help.

Although I have not yet been employed in the educational sector, my Bachelor’s work, as well as my life experiences, have given me a nuanced and sophisticated knowledge of the educational field. I have acted as a coordinator for the Be close to the child to be safe UNICEF project, through which we ensured the well-being of children affected by violence by providing the necessary recreation, psychosocial and life skills. When my own children attended school, I was involved in their schools’ organizations and often took on a leadership role in the educational committees. I served on many boards and was active in assisting both instructors and administrators. Seven years of experience has familiarized me with the diverse needs of Taiz’s students, and it has prepared me to act on their behalf. We raised awareness towards more than 6000 children and through our mobilization sessions we aimed at encouraging parents and community members to ensure that their children continue the learning process. We provided life skills sessions on hygiene, sanitation, and confidence-building. In addition, we held educational sessions and extra-curricular activities where they were taught simple math, Arabic, story-telling, geography.

The Asherah Foundation scholarships for women: How it could shift my life

The women’s Second Chance Scholarship would be of great assistance in supporting my goal to finish my degree.  I worked at Cyaia Morni Company, and have chosen to stop working in order to achieve my dream of getting a master degree.  The women’s Second Chance Scholarship provides a chance for people who are struggling to return to school, to become the exception and succeed.  I hope to become one of those special people and it is with great honor and appreciation that I apply for it.

This scholarship would allow me to work less and focus more on my studies. Meanwhile, this scholarship will support me to do more community service and explore my potential in assisting the needs of people. It will also motivate me to pursue academic excellence. I can assure you that I will be a dedicated professional that you will be proud to count among your ranks.

This scholarship will certainly strengthen my opportunity to take multiple research methodology courses and critical analysis which I was not able to pay for due to my financial burden. The scholarship can help me further my professional training and certification goals that I have set for myself and will in turn help me start a true career in research writing and criticism in civil society. Overall, this scholarship will help me accomplish my current goal and eventfully help me become a successful professional in the NGO field.

Noura

Noura is one of the Asherah Foundation’s outstanding recipients of 2019’s Second Chance Scholarship for women around the globe. Thank you for constantly supporting our fundraiser! We are happy to build Noura’s dream together!

*For privacy purposes, the real name has been changed.

About us: The Asherah Foundation

Dedicated to providing Second Chance Scholarships to Women around the world, the Asherah Foundation helps women obtain a post-secondary credential. Learn how you could help us support more women, by checking our fundraiser or by contacting us.

Meet Thalia, our Recipient of 2019's Second Chance Scholarship

The story of Thalia is a story of resilience. At Asherah foundation we have the conviction to help women around the world have access to second change scholarships and have their chance at success.

Everyone has the right to education, we believe in the potential of women around the world and are continuously inspired by our applicants’ drive and stories of resilience

Meet THALIA

Thalia
Thalia is one of Asherah Foundation’s 2019 Second Chance Scholarship recipients.

“On 21 October 1993, an ethnic conflict broke out following a coup against Melchior Ndadaye. This civil war between Hutus and Tutsis took away my father and some members of my family. With the rest of the family, we had to take refuge in an Internally Displaced camp for fear of getting killed.

In 1996, when I was six years old, there was a rebel attack in the chief town of Bugendana commune, where we were taking refuge. The attack took more than 400 people and this is when I lost my right leg. After three years of hospitalization, I joined primary school at 9 years old. However, in the Burundian education system, the age required to start the first year is 7, thus I was two years late. I was welcomed by the Saint Kizito Center of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, which takes care of the handicapped. This Center supported me until the end of high school and also helped me to have a prosthesis that made it easier for me to move up to now.

How second chance scholarships can change lives

picture of Thalia
Meet Thalia

Since my family did not have the means to pay me university, I tried to ask for sponsors from associations and individuals but I could not get help. Having this scholarship will be a golden opportunity for me as a disabled woman, especially since people with disabilities are still marginalized, their right to education and proper vocational training to access the market being constantly denied. This type of behavior reinforces the preconceived ideas regarding the weakness of their capacities, which only increases their difficulties.

In Burundi, the marginalization of people with disabilities is compounded by the fact that disability is generally perceived as a disadvantage. This scholarship will allow me to advocate with the Burundian government for people with disabilities, especially for children, so that they have access to an education that allows them to flourish and lead a productive life.

Inclusiveness for all is important

The life of a disabled child could be transformed through quality education. Too many children around the world cannot reach their full potential due to the lack of access to quality education. This scholarship will also allow me to plead for the fight against discrimination and exclusion of people with disabilities in employment by considering them as unfit while they are capable.

In Burundi, even disabled people who have had a quality education cannot find work. People with disabilities are doubly losers in the labor market because barriers are already present in schools. Education should normally be an open door to the world for people with disabilities, unfortunately they hit a wall more often than not.”

About us

We are a nonprofit organization that helps women around the world access second chance scholarships to change their lives.

We seek to improve communities by pursuing post-secondary education and we believe we can help change the world. Learn how you could help us support more women, by checking our fundraiser or by contacting us now.

tHALIA

Thalia is one of Asherah Foundation’s outstanding recipients of 2019’s Second Chance Scholarships for women around the globe. Despite struggling for survival from an early age and fighting with discrimination, Thalia has never given up.

Thank you for constantly supporting our fundraiser! We are happy to build Thalia’s dream together!

*For privacy purposes, the real name has been changed.

My second chance at life

It was the summer of 2015; I had just graduated from college with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and was headed to graduate school in the fall to pursue my Master’s Degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. I felt like I had so much to look forward to with my entire life ahead of me. It is strange how one’s life could go from bright and sunny to a natural disaster in a matter of weeks. Not long after graduation I found myself in my doctor’s office, fiddling my fingers, waiting for her to come back with the results. « A tumor », she said. Earlier that month, I had gone in for a routine annual woman’s wellness exam which included a breast examination. A lump was felt in my left breast which was confirmed by a mammogram that it was, in fact, a tumor. Was it benign or malignant? Could this be breast cancer? What stage? How many rounds of chemotherapy will I have to endure? A million questions raced through my mind, drowning out what my doctor was saying to me. I went home that day feeling shattered and unsure of my meticulously planned future. The next day was my sister’s high school graduation. She was the valedictorian of her class which made the day even more joyous. I kept the results of my doctor’s visit from my family, not wanting to take away from the special day.


Throughout the next several weeks, I continued to keep my diagnosis a secret from my family and friends, making routine visits to the doctor, scheduling a biopsy, and eventually scheduling a date for surgery to remove the tumor. I calculated the costs of anesthesia, operating room fees, surgeon fees and traveling expenses. Without health insurance, the only option I found myself with was to take out a loan to cover the medical expenses. If I told my parents of the surgery, they surely would have offered financial help but I didn’t want to burden them after the years of sacrifice they made for me.

My parents are the two hardest working people I know. They came to the United States in 1988 after fleeing from the first intifada in the West Bank, Palestine. They left the only life they knew behind to start a better one, not only for them, but for their four daughters. They both pursued higher education and made sure to instill the importance and value of pursuing an education and gaining knowledge. While they might have been willing to offer assistance, I knew this was something I needed to endure on my own. After a successful surgery to remove the benign tumor, I finally told my family. They offered to provide whatever assistance I may have needed, but I only asked for moral support. I made the biggest sacrifice of my life by choosing to postpone my admittance into my Master’s program in order to work full time to pay off my medical bills.


For the next year and a half, I worked to pay off my medical debt while also working in two psychology laboratories to expand knowledge of research methods and skills to hopefully put to use in graduate school. At times I felt like I was drowning; reaching for the surface only to be pulled back under, however, I persevered. There were more times than I’d like to admit when I wanted to give up, yet I worked hard every day and continuously reminded myself that not even a cancer scare could stop me from attaining my goals.

Eventually, I reapplied to graduate school and got accepted into a tier one university with a reputable I/O Psychology program. I was met with feelings of joy and despair. I was thrilled that I was back on track with my original plan of pursuing higher education to further my career yet I was terrified that I had almost no money saved up due to paying off my medical bills while also paying my living expenses.


If I was awarded this scholarship, it would give me the ability to focus more on my studies rather than stressing over how I will pay for my tuition. My good standing in my undergraduate studies and determination throughout the past two years is evidence of success in my future graduate studies. While my life during the past few years hasn’t gone exactly according to my plan, I am thankful that I am alive and well. I am forever grateful that I was given a second chance at life, and I believe this scholarship can give me a second chance in pursuing my lifelong dream of obtaining a graduate degree.

Sandra

Sandra is one of Asherah Foundation’s outstanding applicants of 2017’s Second Chance Scholarship for women around the globe. Despite fighting with a tumor, she did not give up on her dreams, facing all of her challenges with strength.

*For privacy purposes, the real name has been changed.


A journey into the human mind

Throughout my University of studying psychology, I have developed a rich and passionate love for the human mind. My Bachelor’s in Child Psychology has prepared me well for further pursuit of the subject. I have undertaken comprehensive study of various aspects of human mind and behaviour in a wide range of difficulties from mild conditions such as depression, anxiety, antisocial personality disorder, severe developmental disorders, to more complicated mental disorders such as Schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s disease.

After   completing   my   undergraduate   degree, I   found   that   my   interest in behavioral, emotional, and cognitive disorders cannot be separated from my life.  I further pursued my studies by completing a master’s degree in Neuroscience at Montreal Neurological Institute (MNI) at McGill University. My master’s project was about assessing domain-specific cognitive impairment   in   the   geriatric   population including study of normal elderly cognitive function, mild cognitive impairment, and dementia. Through this, I have become familiar with diagnostic information for geriatric cognitive disorders.  Furthermore, I had the opportunity to observe and contribute to the administration of neuropsychological assessments.  Much of this work involved working closely   with   a   supervising   clinical   psychologist   and allowed   me   to   have   direct interactions with patients. Through this wealth of educational experience and opportunity, I have gained knowledge in the field of cognitive disorders and developed the skills necessary to conduct clinical research.  My work experience expands to clinical research evaluation, and statistical analysis field as well as writing on different psychological topics for scientific magazines. Through my multiple occupations, I have had a chance of working with children and adults with mental, emotional, and social difficulties (i.e.  Autism, ADHD, Nicotine Anonymous). These experiences have improved my skills in critical thinking, problem solving, communication, and decision-making.  

Through the course of my education and work experience I found that the human being is more than a brain (neurons and cells), and we are not able to study humans without considering his/her personality, emotion, past experiences and culture.  On the other hand, there are still many gaps in human studies that neuroscience and psychology cannot fill, effects of past human experiences and unconscious mind on behavior.  My interest to unconscious mind and its critical influence on human emotions behavior has been increased by studying Sigmund Freud’s and Melanie Klein’s understanding of it.  If the unconscious mind is left unlocked, it can disturb many functions of human life, such as social interaction, which is a vital aspect of human survival. These make psychoanalysis a critical field of study for the benefit of both individuals and society as a whole. The significance of modern psychoanalysis to society cannot be underestimated. It is the only field that studies the human being with all aspects and with no censors.

Understanding the deepest layers of human motivation and conflict can make a significant improvement in solving the problems of our society. Psychoanalysis helps traumatized children, youth, and adults (e.g. victims of violence) who are ill and in pain to cope with their scars, fears, not temporarily but for lifelong. Psychoanalytic therapy helps people to better integrate their emotions, behaviours, and thoughts to demonstrate constructive and cooperative interactions in the society. I have to come to appreciate the value of psychoanalysis for our society, and would like to contribute to further advancements.

As a master’s graduate with academic background in both psychology and neuroscience, I have a chance of contributing to the developing field of neuropsychoanalysis to investigate the complex relationship between the mind, brain, and emotions. I can help people with brain, mind and consequently behavior difficulties to integrate to their society. I believe that this program will prepare me with the knowledge, skills and experience to establish a successful career in a fascinating and rapidly expanding field to promote the quality of life in the people of my society.

Francisco

Francisco is one of Asherah Foundation’s outstanding applicants of 2016’s Second Chance Scholarship for women around the globe. After obtaining her master degree from McGill University, she decided to continue researching the psychoanalysis field in order to better the life of patients, and facilitate their reintegration into the society.

*For privacy purposes, the real name has been changed.

A noble passion

I first heard the term physical therapy when I was a child as my own siblings were diagnosed with muscular dystrophy disease and the only treatment for them was physiotherapy and rehabilitation. I was going with them to physiotherapy sessions and so, when I finished my high school I had only thought of myself as a physiotherapist as it was my passion. Thank God I was graduated with a very good grade from the bachelor degree in 2004 and I got a scholarship from my University (Al-Quds University) to continue my master degree in the United Kingdom as I had my master in Rehabilitation Science from the University of Nottingham in 2008.

During my work as a physiotherapist and as a clinical supervisor I have seen many cancer survivors but when I had a cancer patient in my family, the issue was different and I had become more oriented about the ongoing complications that affects their quality of life, and from all my siblings I was the most helper for my late father during his illness from lung cancer till he died in 2011. Therefore, that was my starting point of passion in doing up a research about cancer survivors, especially with post breast cancer surgery survivors, which affects many women and their everyday life details as we are living in the eastern society.

Unfortunately, there is little knowledge from both doctors and patients about the role of physiotherapy and rehabilitation for cancer patients and that’s what makes it more interesting and challenging for me in doing up this comparison research about physical activity, cardiopulmonary and quality of life differences between different countries and cultures to have a holistic view about this issues and trying to understand where is the gap and so starting to work upon it .  

Cancer survivors have many complications that are affecting their quality of life such as joint pain, limited range of motion, lymphatic oedema, shallow breathing and low physical activity which are issues that physiotherapy can address and trying to decrease if we are starting to work with those survivors as soon as possible, and if they continue to do the exercises alongside with other adjunctive cancer treatments. I hope that I can learn more about the assessment, treatment protocols and research in the PhD journey as through my reading I found that there is a lot of evidence based practice on this subject but I still need a University that have interest in this issues as well as a supervisor to guide me through this research. Moreover, to find practical methods to help cancer survivors and improve their quality of life.

Madinah

Madinah is one of Asherah Foundation’s outstanding applicants of 2016’s Second Chance Scholarship for women around the globe. She is currently a PhD student in the School of Health Science at the University of East Anglia, in the UK, where she is pursuing her dream of changing the life of cancer patients.

*For privacy purposes, the real name has been changed.

The Heart of a Survivor

It was a beautiful evening when I arrived home and my mom was waiting for me with a stick. As she began beating me, I asked her “why?” and she beat me even more. “You were talking to a boy today and that’s not what I’m sending you to school for,” my mom stated as she beat me mercilessly. “No more school for you! You’ll stay home, cook, and wash. You’ll go to the fields to work on cocoa and coffee, oranges, citrus, and bananas.” That was it – my education was over. Instead, I tended the house and worked the land. I carried large bunches of bananas for half-a-mile and dug holes to replant them. I did every chore imaginable.

Then, I was married off to a stranger in an arranged marriage, when I was only fourteen University old. The year was 1983, when my childhood ended in Trinidad. While I always had wanted an education, without any real opportunities, that dream soon faded and was almost lost.

However, hope and drive prevailed in my life. I never gave up wanting the chance to challenge my mind and go back to school. But this would take University for me to achieve, and would require me to leave my country and find a new home in the USA.

When I was young, I had been a good student. But the coffee was ready for picking and bananas needed tending to, so this always trumped school. None of my seven siblings attended college. The fields were an escape and a prison. I loved nature and gardening, when I wasn’t paired with my father. He was brutal and his beatings were far worse than mother’s. My brother taught me how to enjoy manual labour. Days passed and months came and went. My life seemed to be destined to repeat my mom’s terrible story. They found a husband for me – a violent, abusive, older man. I ran away, but was brought back and beaten. By fourteen University old, I was already married and pregnant. I was treated like property. Life was a nightmare. I learned how to gather and sell produce from the fields, and this gave me a little power. But the day my husband beat our two-year-old daughter with a clothes hanger until she could hardly breathe, I had had enough. I just left – without money or clothes, only my necklace (to sell for food), with no place to go. I slept outside and walked aimlessly towards nowhere.

A stranger said he could give me a ride, but, instead, he pulled over on a lonely road and commenced to force himself on me. I fought and was left for dead. However, rather than crying, I just proceeded to walk my way out to freedom. After many family challenges and legal battles, I finally got my divorce. The system was so unjust, but I never gave up. My parents had destined me to a life of horror. But I would not accept that life as my own. I am a survivor and have overcome enormous hardships.

Over a decade ago, I came to the USA with my two daughters, seventy dollars, and no family or friends. Since then, I have earned my GED and have become a journeyman in the carpenters’ union. In 2013, I enrolled in community college to take back my dream of education that was stolen from me thirty, and will now graduate with my associate’s this August.

Today, my daughters are grown and have almost completed their college education. So here I am, still striving to be who I have always wanted to become. I have turned misery into a new path that has led me to you. Now, all I need is the opportunity to take the next step, so I can excel as I pursue my bachelor’s degree in Industrial & Labor Relations at SUNY Old Westbury.

With the support of the Asherah Foundation Second Chance Scholarship, I know that I will be able to accomplish my educational goals and will continue to be able to advance in my career to become a manager in my local labor union. Thank you so much for your support and for helping me finally achieve my dream.

Patricia

Patricia is one of Asherah Foundation’s outstanding applicants of 2016’s Second Chance Scholarship for women around the globe. Despite the abuses she had faced, she bravely fought for living her own story, not the story others created for her.

*For privacy purposes, the real name has been changed.

Previous Recipients of Asherah Foundation Scholarships

Coming from a wide array of backgrounds and experiences, these women have demonstrated the desire and impetus to continue with their post-grad secondary education by any means necessary. 

The Asherah Foundation: Second Chance Scholarships for Women applauds their hard work and looks forwards to seeing where it will take them! 

2018

  • Nour – Banking & Finance – Yildrim Beyazit University, Turkey
  • Maklin – Economics – Institute for Arab Research and Studies, Egypt
  • Maryline – Environmental Health Sciences – Stella Maris Polytechnic University, Liberia

2017

  • Shakira – Clinical Medicine – Kampala International University, Uganda
  • Amani – STEM – Birzeit University, Palestine
  • Maryline – Environmental Health Sciences – Stella Maris Polytechnic University, Liberia

2016

  • Amani – STEM – Birzeit University, Palestine
  • Sindia – Education – Instituto Profesional Los Leones, Chile

Applicants have come from all over the world

Apply for our 2019 Scholarships at http://www.AsherahFoundation.org/Scholarships

Support our work! Donate today!

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2018 Asherah Foundation Annual Report

Today, March 8, 2019, marks the three-year anniversary of the Asherah Foundation! This non-profit has come a long way since its origins in a handful of conversations among colleagues discussing increasing refugee crises around the world, and difficulties for so many in accessing higher education. These conversations turned into a coherent idea, from: “someone should do something about this” to: “what if we did something about this?” “Be the change you wish to see in the world” has been our informal mantra.

The Asherah Foundation was named after an ancient Mesopotamian goddess (Asherah), known as “she who treads on the sea.” This seemed fitting as many of the stories we were hearing involved treacherous sea voyages – many of which involved areas that were once part of Mesopotamia. Furthermore, many of the stories we were hearing involved women overcoming significant obstacles to obtain education, employment, and a better life for their families.

So, on March 8, 2016, we formed the Asherah Foundation. It has been global since its inception, with Executive Board members, scholarship applicants, Advisory Board members, and interns from countries all over the world. Many who have worked with us have overcome significant obstacles themselves. They are highlighted in the following pages.

In 2018, we had many reasons to celebrate. Amani Jebril, one of our first scholarship recipients completed her master’s degree in Water Science and Environment at Birzeit University and published a book based on her research: Bio-energy in Palestine between Reality and Potential. Ms. Jebril was also invited to consult on the evaluation and updating of two graduate programs at the university.

In 2018 we celebrated the progress of another amazing, and resilient woman. Maryline Jabar, eldest of four, grew up in the heart of a civil war. She has been pursuing her Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Health Sciences at the Stella Maris Polytechnic University in Monrovia, Liberia. First awarded a scholarship in 2017, she made such outstanding progress that we were able to renew her scholarship for 2018.

In 2018 we also awarded a scholarship to Nour Awerah, studying banking and finance at Yildrim Beyazit University after being forcibly-displaced due to the ongoing conflicts in Syria. Finally, we awarded a scholarship to Maklin Hussein Al-Ahmadi, a single mother who fled from the conflict in Yemen and is now finishing her doctoral thesis in Economics in Egypt.

The Asherah Foundation’s scholarships are supported entirely by donations. Our capacity to offer scholarships is limited only by the donations we receive. Support these inspiring and resilient women by making a donation today!

Our Annual Report

In recognition of International Women’s Day, we are pleased to share the Asherah Foundation 2018 Annual Report. In 2018, the Asherah Foundation awarded scholarships to three inspiring women. We also welcomed six new Executive Board members, incorporated six new Executive Board Committees, and began the process of creating a Junior Board led by former managing intern Arzo Kaderi. This work was supported by 16 incredible interns, and a Scholarship Review Committee composed of 12 experts from around the world. This is a truly global organization, as every continent (except for Antarctica!) and world region is represented by these committed individuals.

Our scholarship applicants represented 34 countries, and were studying everything from banking to urban development, with the majority seeking degrees in the much-needed fields of heathcare, STEM, and education. They ranged from ages 19-49, with two-thirds coming from fragile, or conflict-affected states.

We encourage you to learn more about the amazing individuals involved with the Asherah Foundation by looking through our Annual Report which can be found on the home page of our website, keep reading our blog “Voices” where we share the stories of these women, written by these women, and by following us on social media!
*Facebook @AsherahFoundation
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With gratitude for your ongoing support,

Heather MacCleoud

Executive Director

My Story

Being born just a few months prior to the outbreak of the 1989 Liberian Civil War, I grew up under very challenging conditions. I am the oldest of four children and I became fatherless in April 1996 when my father was killed by gunmen of the civil war while trying to find food for the family. As my mother wanted me to go to school, she sent me to live with my late father’s friend. He was kind to me but could not continue helping me when I passed to the tenth grade at the age of 16. I was sent back to live with my mom at the village. Three months after being back, my mother suffered a stroke.

To worsen the situation, while I was tending to my sick mother with my younger siblings, I was forcedly taken to a secret place in a forest by the traditional women group of my village. I was mutilated, circumcised and kept in the bush for three months so the infected wound could heal.

During that period, those women tried to coerce me into accepting that a woman has no role in society besides house work and childcare, that education is not a woman’s activity and that women going to school is a violation to the culture and norms of our society.

Upon my “graduation” from the society bush, I was forced into a traditional marriage by my uncle to marry an older man who was 60 years old at the time. I had just turned 17. I was in this forced marriage for 2 years, a period in which I faced sexual exploitation and slavery and did practically nothing to improve my life. Upon the death of my uncle who strictly believed in fostering traditional practices, I escaped from the village to find a second chance in life through education.

I thought that secondary education would allow me to acquire a college education with the help of a job but to the contrary, I could not achieve this dream because most employers in my country believe that female employees are less innovative as compared to their male counterparts. Thus, women are seldom vetted in competitive employment. I had to struggle and was barely able to pay my education expenses from tenth to twelfth grade.

A few years later, after my graduation, I found information on the Internet about the Asherah Foundation’s Second Chance scholarships for women around the world. I was anxious and happy to apply due to my great desire to earn a college degree. I finally won the scholarship and I am presently a sophomore student at Stella Maris Polytechnic in Monrovia studying Environmental Science. Moreover, I am the oldest and the only one amongst my siblings to have a secondary and college education.

This could not have been achieved without the help of community members and the Asherah Foundation’s scholarship. My dream is to gain knowledge which will give me capacities that can be used to aid in the development of my community, and especially women and children who are disadvantaged in life like I was before I was awarded this Second Chance scholarship.

My interest in community development through women and childrens’ empowerment is of paramount importance. In effect, coming from a village of about 35 huts with a population close to 250 people, majorities of whom are women and children, I have witnessed the lack of basic social services such as schools and clinics. Pregnant women and sick people must take long trips to receive medical attention. With the knowledge gained through my education, I hope to change these conditions through community-based initiatives and advocacy.

Maryline Jabar

Maryline is one of Asherah Foundation’s recipients of this year’s Second Chance Scholarship for women around the globe.

 

Donate to the Asherah Foundation and help give more women a second chance for education.

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