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Needy students get full scholarships in Murang’a

Several children from poor families in Murang’a County have breathed a sigh of relief after a local foundation offered them full scholarships for their secondary education.

The Irungu Nyakera Foundation identified some 110 learners from extremely poor families and offered them scholarships to pursue secondary education at various local schools.

The Sh10 million scholarship kitty is earmarked to support the students as they pursue the four-year education course without facing tuition fee challenges.

On Saturday, the Patron of the Foundation, Irungu Nyakera, issued the learners with cheques to enable them to report to their respective schools.

The beneficiaries who were admitted to Day secondary schools have been languishing at home as others joined Form One due to financial constraints.

The foundation targeted students who attained over 200 marks in the KCPE and who hail from extremely poor families and could not afford to pay fees for day secondary schools.

Coordinators of the foundation traversed villages to identify students who were yet to join Form One, with the target being children of single parents and those from families where parents are suffering terminal illness.

Issuing the cheques, Nyakera, who is currently chairperson of KEMSA, said the programme is aimed at ensuring learners from poor families and those who did not attain marks to join national schools also get a chance to attain their education dreams.

Nyakera, speaking at Kenol, noted that the first batch of 350 students sponsored by the foundation who were in boarding schools completed their secondary education last year, enabling the foundation to pick another group.

He confirmed that the foundation, which was established in 2017, picked beneficiaries from all parts of the county to ensure all areas were positively impacted.

“Apart from full payment of school fees, the students will get mentorship to ensure they are well-rounded and responsible people once they complete their studies.

“We understand students are exposed to various influences which lead them to indulge in irresponsible behaviour, thus ruining their future lives. The mentorship will play a key part in their lives,” he added.

“Education is the future of any nation. The students will have their full fees paid and will also benefit from a mentorship programme that will help them integrate with their peers,” Nyakera stated.

He confirmed that another group of Form One students will be shortlisted next year, calling on Kenyans of goodwill to ensure they support needy students from their areas to help change their lives.

Maragua MP Mary Waithera lauded the initiative, observing that some learners are yet to join Form One due to lack of fees.

She noted that Day secondary schools embrace the neediest learners, many of whom receive admission letters from county or extra-county schools but are unable to join them due to poverty.

Maragua NGCDF, she said, has issued bursaries worth Sh46 million but added that the sponsorship was only able to cover about 60 per cent of applicants.

Mary Wanjiru, a parent from Mariira in Kigumo sub-county, was ecstatic after her son was listed for the scholarship grant, saying she had lost hope of enrolling him in a secondary school.

Wanjiru, a farmhand who picks tea for her livelihood, lauded the foundation, saying the scholarship will ensure her son will pursue his secondary education.

“Whatever I make per day, I use it to feed my children, and I could not spare anything to take my son to school. The foundation has done me a big favour,” she added.

By Bernard Munyao

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