Maru-a-Pula OVC Fund

The Orphan and Vulnerable Children’s (OVC) Program provides full scholarship to orphans and vulnerable children who demonstrate the academic ability to thrive at a world-class learning institution such as Maru-a-Pula, but who cannot afford the costs. The scholarship covers tuition, boarding, all meals, clothing, medical expenses, stationery and other living expenses. In addition each student is assigned to a mentor who offers the support akin to that of a parent.

In 2005, the OVC program was formally launched and was started with two students who participated in the programme. That number grew to 11 fully funded students in 2006, 20 in 2007, and currently stands at 28 fully funded orphans and vulnerable children.  Two of the orphan scholars are currently attending Stanford University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the USA respectively. Kabo Kula, another orphan scholar, was awarded the Top Achievers’ Award in 2011 and currently attends the prestigious Princeton University.

Each year, Maru-a-Pula receives a large number of recommendations from organisations such as SOS, Stepping Stones and government aided schools of promising students for OVC scholarships.  Students complete the application form which includes transcripts from their previous school. Those that have promising academic results are shortlisted and called back for an interview with the principal, admissions officers and relevant year head. The interview gauges how a student will adjust to life at Maru-a-Pula.

Students from all over Botswana have been accepted at Maru-a-Pula, from Gaborone to as far as Dukwi. Since Maru-a-Pula offers boarding facilities, it is able to accept students from all corners of Botswana.

In keeping with the level of importance that the BIHL Trust places in education, a decision was made in 2009 to contribute P 200,000.00 annually to the OVC Fund.

The Trust still continues to contribute to the fund and is currently drafting an MOU that will ensure the Trust can benefit from the association with the OVC Fund. The Trust also plans to take a more active role in the lives of the Fund recipients.

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