GEPAN continues to expand its SEC programme and this year’s novelty includes providing tertiary education opportunities to teenagers who otherwise cannot attend institutions of higher learning.
This includes funding summer classes at the University of Guyana for promising students who are ambitious but whose families cannot cover their expenses. Our beneficiaries receive US $250 – $300 (GY $ 50,000 -$ 60,000) each for 2 courses at UG. As it is with most of GEPAN’s work, the programme places emphasis on rural and hinterland students who are particularly affected due to the distance of higher learning institutions from their homes, travel and accommodation expenses and tuition fees. It seeks to provide equal access to learning opportunities for children who are limited by their social and financial circumstances.
A Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Guyana costs around US $ 1,200 (GY $ 250,000) per year in tuition fees (varies according to degree pursued), while accommodation at the campus dormitory costs US $1,100 (GY $220,000) per year. However, due to limited places available, accommodation on campus is not guaranteed. This is why most students are forced to rent apartments or live with relatives if they can. In neighboring campus, apartments can go from GY $ 25,000 to $ 50,000 or more per month, thereby substantively increasing the overall annual expenses for students. And this does not include other living expenses (food, health, utilities…). As a result, at the end of a school year, a UG student can disburses close to US $5,000 (GY $1,000,000).
Some students are backed by their families while others deemed solvable by banks can obtain loans. However, too many families prefer their children to start working as soon as they complete high school (at the age of about 16-17), since higher education is a luxury for them.
At least four other beneficiaries are expected to benefit from this new component of SEC and we are counting on the support of donors to make this a successful and steady initiative. GEPAN relies only on private and business funding and does not receive Government funding.
We welcome your invaluable contribution so please feel free to visit our website to make a donation or contact us for more information.