A GROUP of inspirational Shoalhaven women presented $7000 on Friday to help 13 local students to reach their dreams.
Last year a group of women who were involved in the Shoalhaven Women’s Conference established the Shoalhaven Education Fund (SEF).
SEF chairwoman Linda Marquis said the group believed the youth of the Shoalhaven were the region’s future.
“Members of the Shoalhaven Women’s conference decided to investigate ways and means of assisting the region’s young people.
“In 2012 the Shoalhaven became part of an Australia-wide organisation the Country Education Foundation of Australia,” she said.
“The SEF was established to provide much needed financial assistance and support to local youth to help them achieve their post high school education, training and vocation aspirations.
“The Country Education Foundation matches our fund-raising dollar for dollar over the first three years of establishment.
“It was recognised the cost of regional students pursuing their post high school goals is often much greater than those of their metropolitan counterparts and that sometimes these costs can be prohibitive.
“With this in mind, the SEF fund-raised throughout the year and has accepted donations from local residents and businesses to provide financial grants to students who need an extra helping hand.
“It’s our way of saying we believe in you and want to support your goals.”
Ms Marquis said grants were not awarded on an academic basis, rather a diverse range of education and career pursuits were supported including apprenticeships, traineeships, cadetships, degrees, diplomas and studies at TAFE or private colleges and entry level employment.