Tzu Chi Foundation – Bohol had its scholarship awarding ceremony on October 15 – 17, 2021 at Tzu Chi Bohol Activity Hall. The 3-day activity was divided into 6 sessions (2 sessions in a day) to observe and follow physical distancing among the participants. The ceremony was witnessed and presented by Uncle Joven Uy, Brother Chris Chen, Sis. Jessica Alcala, former Tzu Chi staff Mary Therese Biloy, and graduate scholars.

Arlene Pelayo, the Educational Assistance Program in-charge assistant explains the reason of conducting the program.

“We are conducting awarding ceremony for the scholars to be acknowledged this year. Also conducting orientation to the new scholars and re-orientation for the existing scholars to know and recall the rules of the foundation as they availed the scholarship grant,” said Pelayo.

Uncle Jack Gaisano and Uncle James Chua gave their inspirational message to the scholars thru Video Tape Recorder (VTR). Presentation of scholars was done by Uncle Joven Uy and also gave his words of inspiration to everyone. Scholars were inspired and motivated by their message.

The awarding of scholarship was done and given per school. Uncle Joven Uy, together with the staff, volunteers, and graduate scholars handed the certificate to the scholarship recipients. Existing scholars were truly grateful that once more, they are still given the privilege to continue their studies with the help of the Tzu Chi Foundation. No words can express how happy the newly-selected scholars were as they hold and received the certificate of scholarship.

The newly selected scholars rendered their gratitude speech for being one of the chosen scholars in Bohol. They were truly grateful and blessed to have Tzu Chi Foundation in their lives, for with its help, they may be able to pursue their dreams in life and hoping that soon they will finish the race.

One of the newly selected scholars is Lope Demetri Daigan. He is 19 years old and lives in Tagum Sur, Trinidad, Bohol. Lope is a second-year student in Bohol Island State University-Main Campus with the course Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering.

“I am thankful for this opportunity for being one of the scholars of Tzu Chi Foundation and hoping that this would help me a lot. This would serve as my inspiration to help others, to grow as a person, to develop what I have, and to learn what I have to learn,” said Daigan.

Lope is one of the outstanding performers during his high school years, active in school organizations and much rehearsed in terms of sports.

“For the people who struggling in life, just remember there is someone who you can run through. There is Tzu Chi Foundation that helps people, inspire others, and lift us from what we are right now.” He added.

Since he lived in an average type of living and to sustain his needs especially in school, he applied as a houseboy to one of his cousin’s friends. Lope believes that Tzu Chi Foundation would help him in terms of financial and educational stability and hoping that he can attain a degree in the future and help to grow and build the country.

Irah Fariñas is also granted a scholarship from Tzu Chi Foundation. She is 18 years-old residing in Mansasa, Tagbilaran City and took up Bachelor of Science in Nursing at University of Bohol.

“I am so very grateful because I did not expect to be accepted in this scholarship. I am raised with a single parent who has polio disability and life was not easy for us. In terms of financial capability, I know we are lacking of that,” said Fariñas.

Irah is a well-rounded person, an artist, and a consistent honor student. She wants this scholarship because she really needs financial help and her mother cannot handle the school expenses any longer.

“When I applied to Tzu Chi scholarship, I always bear in mind to always try my best. But when I was accepted to this scholarship, I always taught myself that this is the opportunity that I’ve been waiting for.” She added.

“I am very thankful to all the staff because they are so very welcoming to me. Also, to the founder, Dharma Master Cheng Yen for giving us the chance to continue our dreams, passion, and we get to be one step closer to our dreams and future,” she happily uttered.

Graduate scholars Kristine Claire Taray, Julie Ann Calamba, Roland Calamba, John Dave Lamoste, Leo Rey Juagpao, and James Anthony Ytac were also shared their message of inspiration to the new and existing scholars.

“This is the 8th edition of the scholarship program. Today we have 240 scholars strong and they are in different colleges (private and public) and they are in different courses in the field of education, engineering, sciences and the medical field,” said Uncle Joven Uy, Tzu Chi – Bohol commissioner, as he was also happy for the success of the activity.

“We are offering these courses to indigent students who has aimed to be successful in their life. We hope that by doing so we will be helping a lot of families to have a better life in the future.” he added.

Scholars went home bringing souvenirs including rice and some groceries given by Tzu Chi Foundation.

For the school year 2021-2022, a total of 240 scholars who were given scholarship assistance from the Tzu Chi Foundation. In which 16 of it are the new scholars, 205 are existing scholars, 12 are the livelihood trainees, and 7 caregiving students. This educational assistance provided by Tzu Chi Foundation gave hope and joy to those who wanted to finish their goals and is financially challenged.

As what Dharma Master Cheng Yen said, “Nothing is impossible with confidence, perseverance, and courage.” This scholarship will not only give them the academic excellence but to improve their life character to follow our Master’s path.