Finca Uganda has awarded scholarships to at least eleven students from different parts of the country to study at different Ugandan universities
The Microfinance Deposit-taking Institution (MDI) announced at its head office in Kololo today Friday that the awardees were chosen from a pool at least 500 applicants that responded to call in January for the opportunity. At least Shs 144m will be spent annually on the winners until they graduate, in what Finca said was a give-back to the community.
Managing director James Onyutta said: “We are only doing one of the many activities and expect parents to continue supporting these young women and men in other ways.”
“For the beneficiaries of the award, embrace it heartedly.”
Phiona Luswata, a business consultant who made the selection, said applicants were asked to write an essay to show the need for the scholarship. Among the other things they considered were the applicants’ confidence, command of English, the way of articulation of issues, and the relevancy of the course to the community where they come from.
When the applicants were sieved to 14, they were visited at home to see if the need they talked about in the essays was actually true. A mother of one of awardees from Northern Uganda said she never imagined a vehicle would ever reach her home but now she was in Kampala – a place she would only see in dreams.
Gillian Lamwaka, an awardee from central region and she is going to study bachelor of human resource management,at the International University of East Africa Kampala, said many of them were not sure whether they would finish their courses.
She said the Finca gesture had given them another chance to dream. The awardees will attend Uganda Christian University, Kyambongo University, Kampala International University, Makerere University, Busitema University, Gulu Institute of Health Science, School of Clinical Officers Mbale, among others.
Finca, established in 1992, has 27 branches across the country. Its business model targets small businesses and people in the informal sector usually underlooked by the bigger commercial banks.
Finca and other MDIs have at times posted higher profits than established commercial banks.