One-year scholarship for top student

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Moorosi Tsiane

THE Lesotho National Olympics Committee (LNOC) has awarded a $860 (about M12 298) one-year scholarship to Leqele High School student Matšeliso Toloane in recognition of her academic and sporting performance.

The scholarship was handed over during LNOC’s annual general meeting on Sunday at AVANI Maseru Hotel.

According to LNOC Chief Executive Officer, Morake Raleaka, the scholarship was funded by the Olympafrica Foundation which supports projects in Africa and focuses on disadvantaged communities.

Dubbed Keba Mbaye Scholarship, the grant is meant to benefit underprivileged children in African countries using Olympafrica centres by covering their schooling and personal needs.

He said Toloane used the Lepereng Olympafrica Centre in Maseru, adding that she was awarded the scholarship after the facility applied to the Olympafrica Foundation.

“All Olympafrica centres have the opportunity to apply for this scholarship every year, with the winners selecting a child of their choice to benefit for a period of a year,” said Raleaka.

“We apply to the Olympafrica Foundation on behalf of disadvantaged children through our centre and come up with a motivation on the scholarship’s positive impact on the life of a recipient.

“However, applying does not necessarily result in a scholarship, since we are the only southern African country to win it this year.”

The LNOC boss said the scholarship would cover Toloane’s needs for the 2017 academic year.

“She will be a Form D student next year, so the scholarship will be covering all her school needs including tuition fee, books, uniform, school educational trips and many more. The balance will be used to compliment her nutrition at home and cover her transport costs to school,” he said.

“Toloane was selected based on her hard work and commitment since she started attending our Lepereng-based centre. During the handover ceremony, Toloane’s legal guardians were also present.”

While conceding that a one-year scholarship was not enough to make a long-term impact, Raleaka was quick to stress that it would help the guardians save money for the coming year.

“Of course, we are all aware that a one-year scholarship is not enough because it was designed to benefit as many children on the African continent as possible. The good thing is the scholarship will help the guardians to save for the next year, and that is why we made sure they were present at the handover ceremony,” he said.

At the same event, LNOC handed over diploma certificates to 12 students who completed a one-year Advanced Sports Management course last year.

“Twenty students enrolled for this course, but only 12 managed to pass after a full assessment was made,” Raleaka added.

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