Meet Dayanara Manzano, she is a Standard 4 student at Isla Bonita Elementary School who is visually impaired. If it were not for the assistance of the Sunshine Scholarship Foundation of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, Dayanara would have been having a difficult time attending school.
Due to her disability, Dayanara would have a challenging time attending a regular public school where she would not receive the attention needed obtain a proper education. It is through the assistance of the Sunshine Scholarship Foundation that she can attend a private school, such as Isla Bonita Elementary, where she is able to get the one-on-one attention from her teachers.
Dayanara is a very bright, cheerful and intelligent young girl who is doing excellent in her schooling. The Sunshine Scholarship Foundation monitors her schooling, grades and attendance at Isla Bonita Elementary School, as does for all the students they have granted a tuition scholarship. This is the second year that the Foundation has provided scholarships for students at Isla Bonita, with a count of five children under their wing this year.
Dayanara Manzano attending a class field trip of Isla Bonita Elementary School
The Sunshine Scholarship Foundation is a registered nonprofit foundation whose purpose is the promotion of quality education for children of Belize. Its mission statement says that it strives to make a difference by nurturing their recipients to be the best they can be. The foundation is supported by both corporate and individual donation to fund deserving students specifically to provide them with quality education. For the past two years the foundation has worked closely with Isla Bonita Elementary, receiving recommendations from Principal Addy Martinez as to children who would greatly benefit greatly from the foundation.
Joy Flowers and Eve Dirnback, founders of Sunshine Scholarship Foundation
The next step is for the Foundation to grant scholarships outside of Isla Bonita Elementary and will consider application from children who would like to attend other schools on the island, not limited to Isla Bonita. This is why the Foundation is appealing to the business community (or any partner in education) who wish to make a difference in the life of a child who could benefit tremendously from the scholarship.
Scholarship recipients are expected to maintain a minimum grade of “B” and attend classes regularly, The Board of Directors is responsible for awarding the scholarships, as well as monitoring the progress of each child in the program. Up to now, the program is working great according to Joy Flowers, who mentions that not one child has been disqualified from their scholarship. All recipients have shown much improvement in their schooling.
During this time of ‘giving’ the board of directors of the Foundation is encouraging anybody to make a Christmas gift to a child, like Dayanara, who would benefit tremendously from the scholarship. The foundation operates as a registered NGO and persons or businesses who donate receive a receipt that is valid for tax deductions. Interested persons or entities can find out more about the foundation by contacting Joy Flowers at 226-3725, email: [email protected] or Eve Dirnback at 623-9962, email: [email protected].