The Sierra Leone War Trust (LSWT) on Thursday 26th May awarded scholarships to sixty (60) pupils of the Forum for African Women Educationalist (FAWE) that are now in different Junior and Senior Secondary Schools in the Western Area.
While giving an overview of the programme, Mrs Marion Morgan said the Trust started immediately after the war by seven Sierra Leoneans who came together to help people affected by the war and they first started giving assistance in agriculture and then expanded into education.
Mrs Morgan maintained that in 2005, the SLWT started offering scholarships to pupils of FAWE School who sat to the NPSE and scored good marks. For the first programme five pupils were offered one hundred thousand Leones as a support for their uniforms, books and transportation, adding that the number increased in 2008 to thirty (30) pupils. This was because the girls were excelling in their work and they maintained discipline, which is what they stand for. Mrs Morgan maintained that the numbers further increased to sixty pupils in 2006 to enable these girls further their education and this was done based on their performance and the need to empower more girls.
Mrs Morgan said as the cost of living became difficult for people, SLWT increased the fund to three hundred thousand (Le300,000) for each of the sixty pupils, stressing that the scholarship has brought positive benefit to the children as some have even gone to Universities including College of Medicine and Fourah Bay College.
Mrs Marion Morgan advised the pupils to be steadfast in their academic work and also for them to be disciplined “as long as you continue to do well, you will get the award which will be given to you throughout your junior and secondary school if you continue to do good work”.
The President of FAWE, Freetown Branch, Mrs. Grace Fullah said the girls continue to make FAWE proud and the number of recipients keeps increasing. About SLWT, she said the Trust has been of immense help to them as they even help in the payment of the teachers’ salary during the ebola period, stating that this is an example Sierra Leoneans in the diaspora should emulate as they should learn to look back where they came from and to give back. She said some of the pupils are doing well in their academic work but some of the pupils can’t afford to pay their fees and that is where the Trust stepped in to see that these pupils continue their schooling. Mrs Fullah admonished the pupils to give back to their communities or school when they grow up.
The Chairman of the SLWT in England, Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr, in her inspirational talk to the pupils, said she wants to make connections with the girls and wants them to take their work seriously, disclosing that pupils should use social media as a means to compete with others as this makes impact in their academic picture. She impressed on them to take their school work seriously.
She added that the pupils should look at what they want to achieve and what they will do in changing the world, as her contribution to the nation did not happen by accident because her parents set a challenge about education and she was able to achieve it.
Yvonne Aki- Sawyerr called on the girls to follow the steps of the eminent women in the country who started like they [pupils] but decided to take their work seriously and they should do more than their homework.
The Chairman of the ceremony, Andrina Coker, urged the pupils to follow the foot steps of women as she believed that women’s influence in society is greater than men and that women continue to make a difference in the nation more than men.
She said it is important for the girls to realise they have a big role for the development of the nation.
Friday May 27, 2016