Assisting Stranded Super Stars

In 2021, SOS Children’s Villages Canada, the Steele Family Foundation, and the SOS-Hermann Gmeiner International College (HGIC) in Ghana, partnered to establish the World Impact Scholarship & Education (WISE) program. Sponsored by the Steele Family Foundation, this 2-year scholarship program will empower talented HGIC students who grew up in SOS family-based care across Africa to study at leading African universities.

The HGIC is a center for academic excellence located in Tema, Ghana that brings together 355 secondary school students from more than 12 African nations. The HGIC provides its students with the highest quality secondary education in a spirit of Pan-Africanism.

By providing a holistic education, the HGIC aims to develop students into confident, resilient adults who can thrive in our fast-paced and rapidly changing world. Students are instilled with critical and analytical thinking skills and encouraged to become life-long learners and leaders in their community.

Despite being accepted into prominent universities, some HGIC graduates decline post-secondary opportunities because of a lack of financial assistance. The WISE Scholarship will support students who have demonstrated leadership and active involvement in their community, and enable their post-secondary education in three ways:

  • Recipients are instilled with key skills and knowledge (e.g., career counselling, life skills training).
  • Recipients receive the financial support required (e.g., tuition, fees, accommodation, books).
  • Recipients are supported in their personal and professional development (e.g., mentorship, internship and volunteering opportunities).

The WISE Scholarship utilizes the WISE Portal, a web application developed by the Steele Family Foundation to connect gifted young people with the resources to pursue post-secondary education. Eligible students are invited to apply for the WISE Scholarship through the portal, and scholarship recipients use the portal throughout their post-secondary education to manage their scholarship funds, engage with their peers, and report on their academic experiences. The portal will connect a community of young scholars, while also building a model that can be replicated to other countries where SOS Children’s Villages operates.