The Harriet Hall Foundation (HHF), is a non-profit Montego Bay-based organisation. They offered scholarships to three (3) Mount Alvernia High School students last year. The foundation has now decided to expand its programme by adding ten (10) new beneficiaries, bringing this year’s number to thirteen (13) students.
The students will receive US$1,500 each in scholarship funds for the 2020-2021 school year. In addition, the Harriet Hall Foundation’s (HHF’s) lunch programme, which also includes students outside of the scholarship programme, has been increased from last year’s six students to twenty (20) students for the upcoming school year. Each student will receive J$400 each per day.
The Harriet Hall Foundation was founded in 2018 by a group of Mt Alvernia High past students. Foundation’s objective is to help students with good academic potential but who are lacking in financial resources. The HHF will support students from Marymount High School in St Mary among the beneficiaries this year.
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“Last year, we had three students on the scholarship programme and six on the lunch programme. All these recipients are from Mount Alvernia High School. However, after connecting with Shameil Smith of Marymount High School, I came to Jamaica and took a trip to the school in St Mary. When I got there, I just knew that we had to get involved. We had to help our sister school and the students there,” said Taedeen Stanley-Barksdale, the founder and chief executive officer of HHF.
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“We did not know how we were going to do this. We didnt know the time frame, but it was something that we had to do deep down in my heart,” said Stanley-Barksdale, as it relates to the St Mary students. “HHF kept at it with our sponsors and just selling that new perspective.
Our foundation is highly backed by past students of Mount Alvernia High, but branching out to Marymount was well-received. Our mission does not say students of Mount Alvernia, it says ‘helping young ladies’ no matter the school or demographic background.”
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Lorna Bailey, principal of Marymount High School, was overwhelmed by the decision of the HHF to extend the programme to her school.
“As the principal, I am excited and extremely grateful to the Harriet Hall Foundation for including us in their vision,” said Bailey. “To have someone coming in and embracing some of those students who are not on PATH, but are equally as needy, it does bring us a lot of happiness and joy.
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To see that this initiative was started by a group of young adults is great. Also, for us to be included, we are not in Montego Bay. Yes, we are a Catholic school, but we are far away.”
Source: The Jamaica Gleaner