Soroptimist International of Clovis celebrated their successful – and first virtual “Live Your Dream” Awards on the evening of February 18, 2021.
Six inspirational women received a total of $5,250 to help with their college education expenses. Four of the women are attending Clovis Community College, one is enrolled at Fresno City College, and one at Reedley College.
Recipients were Manami F., Miriam M., Cynthia, Joana A., Emily W., and Leiloni L. Their last names were withheld at their request.
Each in their own way, are living proof of what can be accomplished when obstacles are overcome. During the event, they shared a glimpse into their lives.
First place recipient, Manami, came to the United States from Japan with her military husband. Everything was new – the culture, the language. When she left her abusive marriage, she successfully studied to learn English in order to get an education and become financially independent in order to raise her son. Her goal is to go into Computer Science and Information Technology.
“I have no background here in the USA, no family support here,” she said. “I decided to go back to college to learn language, to get to know America. I can not fail. I have to do what I need to do for my son, no matter my situation. I will not give up.”
Overcoming substance abuse put second-place winner, Miriam, on the path to achieving her dreams.
“I am two classes away from completing the Substance Abuse Disorder program and receiving my Associate’s degree in Human Services,” shared Miriam. “My goal is to become a certified AOD counselor and transfer to Fresno State so I can earn my bachelor’s degree. My goaI is to operate my own recovery and sober living homes. I want to help addicts break the chains of addiction and I want to provide them a safe and effective environment in which to do so.”
Miriam continued, “The award would help my children and me move into our own place. My dream is to live with my children in our own home, no longer feeling like a burden on my aging parents.”
Soroptimist International is a global volunteer organization that provides women and girls with financial awards to gain access to education and training in order to achieve their dreams and economic stability. Globally, more than $2.6 million in educational grants are distributed to approximately 1,700 women.
Soroptimist also partners with the Marjaree Mason Center, the Evangel Home, the Salvation Army, Family Healing Center, and CUSD Kids in Transition, among other organizations.
For more information on programs, visit siclovis.org or email SIClovis@soroptimist.net.