REMINDER – Give to the Max is Thursday, November 19, 2020
Please consider JLWMSF as you contemplate your donation dollars.
As we head into a holiday season that will inevitably look very different for us because of COVID 19, I would like to extend my wishes to all for a joyous and healthy season. Dealing with COVID 19 in 2020 has provided challenges for many of us. The Josephine Lilly Wolf Memorial Scholarship Foundation was no different. While a challenge may appear daunting, it may also provide us with an opportunity to seek out a new, possibly better solution.
In 2020, our first challenge was how to host a fundraising event responsibly. It wasn’t until April or May that it was clear we could not host our typical event within the confines of the Freight House. It was decided that we would host an outdoor golf outing instead. This allowed us to be socially distant plus outside enjoying a lovely September day. Hosting this type of event had been discussed in previous years, but we had never actually done it. The current situation forced us to reevaluate and adapt. With only a couple of months to prepare, our first golf outing was held at the White Eagle Golf Club in Hudson, Wisconsin. The event went above and beyond our expectations, and we will definitely host another outing in 2021.
Our second challenge was travel restrictions and selecting students. Because Jamaica was closed, traveling to personally interview the students was impossible. As many of us have moved toward meeting virtually, the foundation also utilized this platform for the interviews, and we are now providing financial support to eight students. I never anticipated we could fund this many and realize that it would not be possible without the generosity of so many. We are truly making a difference in these young people’s lives.
Our third challenge was attending the graduation ceremony in August. While Shayne could and did travel to Jamaica in August, he was not allowed to attend the graduation ceremony to personally present the scholarships. Instead, our first student, Saveenia Kelly, stepped up to represent the foundation and presented the awards to the three new students. Saveenia will be our first JLWMSF graduate and it was fantastic to see how much she has matured over the last three years. She is a confident young woman that will be an excellent JLWMSF ambassador in the future.
It should also be noted that Shayne’s time in Jamaica did not go to waste. While there, he was interviewed by two radio stations that introduced our foundation to all of Jamaica. We are uncertain as to where this will lead, but it is a step toward having a larger presence within the country.
Lastly, I am happy to report that all 8 students are currently enrolled and doing their courses online. You may personally know about the challenges online learning presents. Our students seem to be taking it in stride, and the board would like to wish them the best as they pursue their goals.
As we head toward a new year, it is apparent that 2020 has presented all of us with various trials and tribulations. It takes a will to confront a challenge, see the opportunity, and push forward to an albeit better solution in some situations. I am hopeful that these times will become a memory, and that we will utilize what we have learned. I truly wish everyone good health and a safe and happy holiday season. Here’s to better times on the horizon. Cheers!
Regards, Shannon Bruce