KKIS a local charity in Playa del Carmen has many aspects to its programs. One is continuing education through graduation.
The journey to graduation for the scholarship students of KKIS begins at various stages in their educational path. In today’s blog, we’re going to talk about the experiences of those whom we first contacted as they were about to complete junior high. Some of them had plans to continue to a high school, while others did not know what would happen next.
Because of their family’s financial situation, most of them were under pressure to get a job, rather than continue studying, Thus was made worse by the recent hardships brought about by COVID. One thing is certain: all of their lives were profoundly changed when they found out that KKIS wanted to sponsor their 1st year of high school. In today’s blog, we asked Karime, Carla, and Viviana, three KKIS scholars, to share their experiences with us.
1st Contact With KKIS
Receiving the news that someone wants to pay for their high school education often comes as a complete surprise to most of our students. In many cases, it seems unbelievable that someone wants to pay for their studies.
“It was unexpected news,” says Karime. “I got excited and I was very happy because I was getting the opportunity to continue studying and achieve my dreams.”
KKIS scholars are chosen because of their grades, which need to be high and consistent across all their subjects of study. Some of our students were already looking into the possibility of getting a scholarship, like Viviana, who told us that “I felt really happy and flattered when KKIS told me that I had been selected.”
The Parents Reaction
When parents learn about our desire to give their children a high scholarship there is often a lot of skepticism. They can’t believe that someone would want to do this for them. But upon learning more about KKIS, our efforts over the past decade, and our reputation, this quickly changes.
Carla tells us that her parents “got very excited and encouraged me to keep studying” while Viviana’s parents, also very happy and proud, felt a sense of relief. “At that time we were going through a difficult economic situation,” she told us. “And they were excited that my efforts were finally being recognized.”
Meeting With KKIS and Contract Signing
The next step in the process is meeting with a representative from the KKIS office, where everything is explained in detail and the student is told what is expected of them. Each prospective scholar must sign a contract where they commit to studying hard, keeping their grades high, and staying out of trouble. For many, that person is Sara, who will be their main point of contact throughout the years of scholarship.
“Meeting Sara was a pleasant experience,” Karime told us. “She is always aware of what we need and always motivates us to not abandon our dreams.”
Carla tells a similar story, adding that “Sara is a very professional person who inspires confidence. KKIS fulfilled everything they said they would, and I completed my part by maintaining an excellent average.”
While initially thinking that the contract will involve strict and rigid rules, the students soon learn that this is not the case/ “They are easy to comply with” Viviana tells us, “so I had no problem complying with them.”
Sponsorship Changes Lives
Many of our KKIS scholars didn’t know if they would be continuing to high school at the time we contacted them. For many, the prospect of work was the most realistic option or going to a school that suited their financial situation.
Carla told us “My life completely changed when KKIS gave me my scholarship. They allowed me to keep studying.”
This is especially important for those impacted by the events of the past two years. For Carla, COVID impacted her parents tremendously, affecting their ability to earn money. “We have too many expenses right now. I thought that I would no longer be able to study, but thanks to KKIS I now can.”
Entering The 1st Year of High School
“In my first year of high school I was nervous, I thought that the subjects would be difficult,” Karime recalls. “But it wasn’t like that at all. My teachers helped me understand the subjects, and I met good classmates who made me laugh and supported me when I needed it. It was a wonderful experience.”
This is a story that we hear from many of our students. The first year of high school is often a mixture of nerves and excitement, but there is always an element of calmness, knowing that their parents have been relieved of a great burden, which allows them to focus on their studies.
For many of us who grew up in Canada or the United States, the first year of high school is a vastly different experience. The idea of paying to go to a public high school is unheard of, so many of us cannot properly relate. At KKIS we are very proud to be able to help so many bright talented students achieve something that many of us took for granted at the same age. Thanks to the support of our sponsors, the first year of high school for our KKIS scholars will help propel them into a brighter future that will benefit all of us.
We hope you enjoyed this week’s entry in our series The Journey to Graduation. Please stay tuned for the next one, when we will talk about our students’ second year of high school. For more information about how you can help, please click on this link which will take you to our donate page.