Hello WORLD! I am Yasmine Arrington. My mission: To raise $30,000 for students like me – college bound, high school students who have a parent, one of over 2 million adults in the United States that are incarcerated. Will you join me? Then let me tell you about a non-profit organization that I stared (yes, I STARTED). It’s called: ScholarCHIPS! ScholarCHIPS is a non-profit dedicated to raising college scholarship dollars for graduating seniors with incarcerated parents. It was founded through LearnServe International, an organization that helps students in the DC area address social issues.
Here are the facts:
• According to the May 2009 study "Kinship Care When Parents Are Incarcerated: What We Know, What We Can Do" from the Baltimore-based Annie E. Casey Foundation — a private organization that studies disadvantaged children and advocates public policy on their behalf — 62 percent of female prisoners and 51 percent of male prisoners from a total of 2.25 million people in local, state and federal prisons have children under the age of 18.
• A total of 1.7 million children have a parent in a federal or state prison, and 34 percent of those children are between the ages of 10 and 14.
• At the present time there very limited opportunities available for teens with incarcerated parents in the DMV (DC, Maryland, Virginia area)
As a junior, I began looking for scholarships to help me pay for college and I realized that I could not find any for teens with incarcerated parents. Then I thought, “there are a lot of teens in the DC area with incarcerated parents, including myself.” There are a lot of students with an incomplete support system. Without parents to provide guidance and support (financial, emotional and otherwise) to succeed, there is a gap. I had other family members to fill in the gap but I noticed other students did not have this support system. ScholarCHIPS is my way of giving back and letting teens like me without support in the home know that they are not alone and they can go to college and pursue their career goals.
A team of dedicated individuals have chosen to devote their time to training and running the Loudoun Half Marathon in Leesburg, Virginia on Sunday, May 1, 2011 in order to raise funds for ScholarCHIPS. Each runner is responsible for raising $500 so please check out our amazing team featured below and help us reach our goal. But most of all, THANK YOU for your support!!