Scholarship Support Service of SWS
Mothers aspire to raise their children in good circumstances. However, mothers lead a life of poverty and raise their children on their own and accordingly, education for the children is supposed to take a back seat. The children get used to holding what they want to do and learn. It is the reason why Social Welfare Society, Inc. develops its scholarship support service with the warmhearted help of citizens and enterprises.
Children’s dreams shining brightly through learning
Social Welfare Society, Inc. helps the children from low-income unmarried mothers’ families never give up their dreams in the face of the wall of reality. We provide them with the opportunities of pursuing a variety of careers and the foothold for making their dreams come true. They go ahead with their future, using the scholarships actually for the expenses of private institute, qualification acquisition, etc. Seong-hoon in the 3rd grade of elementary school makes the best of the scholarships to get home-school teaching and pursuing his aptitude and talent. Math and English used to be difficult subjects to him, but now he dreams of being a scientist inventing a time machine. Min-seok in the 3rd grade of middle school attends a private drum school with the scholarships in a bid to make himself ready for entering the applied music department at an arts high school. Giving himself over to practice without restrictions on time and space and working on music with his friends, he feels like he gets near bit by bit to the vision of being a music teacher. He wants to make a return for the scholarship support by passing the entrance exam. Jeong-woo who will graduate from his high school next year was qualified as an automobile maintenance mechanic with the scholarship support and his once-uncertain future carrer became apparent. He made up his mind to go on a university to major in automotive engineering. He set up a goal to work for an automobile-related company after having specialized skills.
The scholarships propping up mothers
Mothers say with one voice that the scholarships support service of Social Welfare Society, Inc. meant a lot to them. Seong-hoon’s mother got depressed when he told her disappointedly that he could not keep up with some of his class. She had limits in supporting his studies and her income was not enough to let him attend a private institute. She feels relieved as he seems to have been interested in his studies since he was given the home-school teaching. Min-seok’s mother does not feel easy because Min-seok is not given the proper opportunity of learning though he is so much talented as to have been awarded in various kinds of music competitions. 350,000 won is needed for him to learn to beat drums eight times a month, which is a pressure on her who is responsible for their living all by herself. It is all the more harrowing as beating drums should be continuously learned and practiced. Starting to attend the private institute, he seems to be spending every day with positive energy. It makes her happy. Jeong-woo wanting to get a job as soon as he is graduated from his high school is on her mind, though. It looks like that he has cut his wisdom teeth too early amidst his unfavorable family circumstances and his painful past, so she feels sorry for him. It is somewhat unbelievable that he has the dream of becoming an automobile maintenance mechanic and he is able to design his future. There is someone else that cheer on him, which is great encouragement indeed.
The reality of education for children from low-income families
According to ‘Survey of child-rearing unmarried mothers’ actual condition and desire 2018’ by Korea Population, Health and Welfare Association, 34.4 percent of unmarried mothers took ‘economic hardship’ as the most difficult thing in raising their children. No wonder because the average monthly income of child-rearing unmarried mothers’ families comes to 923,000 won which is far from enough to cover child-care and living costs. It is a matter of course that nobody dare think about education for children. According to ‘Comprehensive survey of children’s actual condition 2018’ by Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs, the average monthly expenditure of private education for the children at age 6 to 17 from the beneficiary households of national basic livelihood was 90,000 won which was as less as 240,000 won than that for the children from ordinary households. The level of satisfaction at school life that children from the low-income brackets felt and the study achievement that they made were relatively low. The level of school life satisfaction that the children at age 9 to 17 from the low-income brackets turned out to be 6.62 points out of 10 points and their school record was 6.31 points. In comparison with the children from ordinary households, the former scored 0.74 points lower and the latter 1.11 points lower. Case manager of Social Welfare Society, Inc. Hyeon-ah Yu says, “After-school education is common these days, but low-income unmarried mothers’ families leading a needy life by depending on national basic livelihood subsidies have no choice but to cut down on education expenses.” and she points out, “Mothers are busy earning a living and they cannot afford to care for their children’s studies.” She also says, “Actually I see many children who fall behind with their studies and may give up their dreams untimely. If the inequality in educational opportunities continues, poverty can be passed down to one’s children."
Sharing, the very reason to laugh
With the support of 131 citizens and 6 enterprises, Social Welfare Society, Inc. is boosting the dreams of 76 children. The scholarship amount which is provided to a child in a year is 1.8 million won in total. Children can use the scholarships for the expenses of self-development education, textbooks, and materials, and medical expenses when necessary as well. Social worker of Social Welfare Society, Inc. Gi-joon Lee, says, “There are many unmarried mothers who have no place to ask for help even in the event of emergency as they lost connection with their families of origin under the influence of the negative awareness of unmarried mothers’ childbirth.” and continues his explanation, “In consideration of the distinctiveness of unmarried mothers’ families, scholarships are allowed to be used for the purposes other than education when children need to be given urgent surgery or treatment.” The criterion of selecting those who are eligible for scholarship is ‘volition toward the future’. Manager of Sharing Service Department of Social Welfare Society, Inc. Won-pyo Hong says, “We don’t give heed to children’s school records or achievement made up to now, but their dreams down the road. Scholarship support service of Social Welfare Society, Inc. aims to help children make their way toward their dreams without giving up by providing them with learning opportunities.” With their warm hearts shared by citizens and enterprises, children take one more step forward to their precious dreams again today.