Every year since 2014, the International Women's Fund (IWF) Education Fund has been recognising and supporting young women from financially-challenged backgrounds during their tertiary education.
The grant affirms these ladies beyond their academic excellence, nurturing their resilience, character and commitment toward making strides in their respective fields. This year, the IWF Education Grant Award Ceremony 2019, held at the Singtel Learning Centre, again recognised young women recipients who have not only shown their potential to excel in school, but also a strong conviction in giving back to society.
The ceremony commenced with Ms Goh Swee Chen, President of IWF Grant Committe Singapore, and Ms Melissa Kwee, CEO of the National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre (NVPC), expressing their heartfelt congratulations to the awardees of 2019, and highlighting the importance of women supporting other women and giving back to the community. The IWF Education Grant Award Ceremony this November also marked the end of the 2nd run of the IWF-YWLC Y-Connect Mentorship Programme, which has brought together 52 mentors and mentees to date.
Our YWLC members are proud to be mentors to yearly recipients of the IWF Education Grant under the Mentorship Programme, which opens up pathways for recipients to take their passions and convictions further by connecting with like-minded young women leaders, who are not only role models they can emulate, build confidence and expand their industry networks with, but also a friend in times in need.
Minerva (left) and her mentee, Angie (right) sharing their mentorship journey at the IWF Education Grant Award Ceremony & Mentorship Programme Closing Ceremony
For many of the mentees, the Mentorship Programme has been a pillar of support in a time of transition to work life, which can make a world of a difference. Mentor-mentee pair Minerva and Angie took the stage, chirping in unison about the memorable interactions they have had, the valuable lessons they have learnt from each other, and how much they had grown in the journey together.
For Minerva, her passion of working with youths and children was what motivated her to take on the role of a mentor in this pay-it-forward Pentorship Programme. Angie, who is currently a management trainee at Westin Singapore, shared the most valuable part of the programme - to have a mentor who is close to you in age, whom you can easily identify with, yet with the experience to provide you with advice and encouragement in manoeuvring the ups and downs of life.
Such companionships are so invaluable as we conquer milestones and make transitions in life, and as we step into the world of the unknown. Mentor or mentee, with time and trust, we learn that it is okay to be vulnerable, to confide in another, and most of all, to be human.
It is indeed rare to find a community of women so passionate in making a difference, whether in our careers or in the world around us. This makes it even more important that we keep building on this network and culture of mentorship - of sharing, learning, working together, and in effecting the change that we want to see.