GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — There’s a new scholarship opportunity targeting the 49507 area code in Grand Rapids. Amplify GR is offering $500 scholarships to make sure students are able to take part in the programs and activities they’re interested in outside of school.
Latesha Lipscomb is the director of engagement and relationships with Amplify GR. She said, “These $500 scholarships can be used for a variety of different things to increase your child’s love of learning including a swim class, tutoring programs, purchasing materials that will increase your child's learning or even be used at book fairs.”
The scholarships are being made available through Amplify GR and its partnership with Out School.
“Sometimes, in historically marginalized communities, children are not exposed to the opportunity to learn to be able to swim, or go skiing, or learn the sport of lacrosse, or even have access to the increased tutoring assistance that they might need, or technology,” said Lipscomb.
This new program is hoping to bridge that gap.
“We all believe that every child deserves increased access to enrichment opportunities that take place outside of school,” said Lipscomb.
Two Grand Rapids mothers who took part in the pilot program had nothing but good things to say.
One of those moms, Tracey Williams, explained that, “It was actually really helpful, a blessing, because I’m a single mother of three.”
“I was just so excited, like, oh, she gets to do the soccer she wants to do, she gets to try cheerleading. She might be able to want to do an instrument. I was just too excited,” said Dejohnae Cegelis, the other pilot program participant who shared her experience.
Lipscomb told 13 ON YOUR SIDE that, “This program is important because it really empowers families to make self-sustaining decisions about what their children love to do and what their children want to learn more about.”
“Ask your kids what they want to do and that will give you kind of like a blueprint of what you should do,” said Cegelis.
Williams shared a few ways she was able to use the money, saying, “I was able to pay a membership off for a year through the YMCA. So, my kids can attend that and we can go workout, go swimming, and then we ended up buying a computer and a printer, as well, to go with it and then on top of that, we were able to go to the zoo and enjoy the lights, which were beautiful.”
There are still a limited number of scholarships available. For the application, visit this website.
All children between the ages of 3 and 18 within the 49507 area code are eligible, regardless of how many children are in the home.