During six volunteering trips to distribute gifts in Kon Plong district, Kon Tum province in 2022, the Be Better Foundation sponsored food for the entire school year for schools, and gave clothes, shoes, and many other gifts to students there. We call these programs the ‘Seedling Project.’
After each trip, we were always concerned. If we only gave them material things such as food and clothing, we would only provide temporary assistance. If those poor students completed ninth or twelfth grade and then returned to get married, work for hire, or labor like previous generations, their lives would still be in a cycle of poverty.
We know that if their awareness does not change, their lives will not change in the future. The lives of their children and grandchildren will also be difficult to change. Changing one life will change many generations to come.
We want to change the future of these students, so we have implemented a long-term scholarship program to help these students change their futures. We call this program “Change the Future” Project.
- Especially difficult circumstances: Especially difficult circumstances not only include poverty, as there are many social conditions of poverty. Such a condition is considered if without assistance, students have to drop out and cannot continue studying after graduating from high school.
- Willingness to change their lives and a profound desire to become good people who can help society in the future: Must pass a reasoning test (45 minutes) and a psychological test interview (15 minutes).
- Passion for learning and the ability to pursue higher education: Not necessarily have excellent academic records, but must have the ability to learn and enjoy learning.
- Commitment from parents/ guardians not to let students drop out halfway through their studies, with the witness of the school or local government.
In December 2022, the Be Better Foundation organized a reasoning test for students who met the admission criteria mentioned above. A total of 45 students took the test. 42 students passed and continued to participate in the interview round.
Continuing the program, on February 16, the Be Better Foundation interviewed 42 students to choose those who passed for the full scholarship.
On February 17, the scholarship-presenting ceremony took place in an air of excitement among the students; a total of 9 students from middle school and 29 students from high school were awarded full scholarships.
The remaining four 12th-grade students who did not meet the requirements for receiving the scholarship will still be supported through the Mentorship program. At the same time, the foundation will also review and verify their circumstances. If they truly face difficulties and cannot continue their studies, the foundation will reconsider and provide them with a full scholarship.
Details of sponsorship:
1. For students at lower secondary school:
- The study funding includes tuition fees, insurance, textbooks, and study tools.
- After the students graduate from lower secondary school (grade 9), the foundation will consider advising students to take vocational training or continue their studies, which depends on each student’s ability.
- If the students go on studying until grade 12 and meet the requirements to continue receiving scholarships, they will be sponsored in the same way as students at upper secondary school.
2. For students at upper secondary school:
- The foundation organizes a mentorship program, including:
- Guiding students to identify their abilities to choose a suitable career and school.
- After students enroll in vocational school/college/university, Be Better supports them in the early stages to stabilize their lives, such as finding accommodation and covering living expenses for the first 1-2 months.
- Guiding students on how to apply for part-time jobs and introducing part-time job opportunities.
- Organizing sharing sessions/skill training for future jobs.
- The foundation sponsors all tuition fees for students taking vocational, college, or university education.
The Be Better Foundation will play the role of a parent, brother, or sister to take care of the students until they graduate from vocational school or college/university.
The students will have to commit not to drop out of school for any reason. Every year, the foundation will review their attitude and progress to continue granting scholarships for the following year.
The expected funding for each student is about 30 million VND / year. The total budget for 42 students is about 1.26 billion VND / year.
Be Better will make a detailed report on the situation of each student and we hope for the companionship of kind-hearted people to nurture these students to finish their studies. Only a small amount of money each month or week, such as 50,000 VND or 100,000 VND, but with the power of hundreds, thousands of people together, Be Better can help change the future of many poor students in remote areas. Later, these students can change the future of their families, their communities, their hometowns, and eventually contribute to changing the whole society.