SEAVURIA SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM
Every year, the SeaVuria Scholarship Programs (Girls to Girls and PETRI) send Kenyan youth to high school. Recent years have totaled over 60 scholarship recipients and the scholarships are paying off.
Marietta Mbinya, a 3-year recipient of a SeaVuria scholarship, earned the top score in all of Taita Taveta County on her college entrance exam, the 2016 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education. This bright young scholar is on her way to a college education; an opportunity that may not have been possible without the financial support of a scholarship.
In rural Kenya, many children drop out of public elementary schools before reaching eighth grade because of unmet needs for school uniforms and shoes, books, pencils, and notebooks. Many families cannot afford to provide their children with the necessities for school.
The cost of private and even public secondary schools is much too high for many Kenyans. A fifth of the populace must get by with less than one euro per day. Only a wealthy minority can afford the expensive private secondary schools, but graduating from a secondary school is a requirement for enrolling in college. Before a child enters ninth grade, it is decided whether he or she will be able to undertake university studies. If not, a child's education is considered complete after the eighth grade.
Young women face additional challenges when making their way through the school system. Families invest less money in girls' education, and many Kenyans share traditional views about the role of women in society, seeing them rather as suited solely for marriage, childbirth and raising a family.
We know that scholarships change lives. Because of the amazing work of our Girls to Girls and PETRI scholarship programs, our generous donors, and their combined passion for creating educational opportunities for all, Marietta is looking at a very bright future.
Click on the buttons below to learn more about each group (Girls to Girls has their own website).
PETRI stands for Philanthropy, Education, Teaching, Research, Involvement. Founded in 2011, PETRI is a club of Mercer Island High School girls. The club has three main areas of focus:
Science: PETRI brings in local scientists to speak to the high school students as well as visiting research labs where the girls conduct our own investigations. The club encourages women to enter science fields.
Scholarships: PETRI raises money to send girls to high school in Kenya. The Kenyan government only pays for education through grade 8. The cost of high school for a day scholar is $300 and for boarding school scholars it is $650. For a family that only makes $1 a day, sending a child, much less a girl, to high school is rare. PETRI together with their sister organization Girls to Girls, sponsored 63 students, 10 boys and 53 girls in 2019.
Friendships: The girls in PETRI create friendships with all of their scholarship recipients. The girls use email, Google Hangouts and Instagram to connect with the Kenyan students.