Grants foster young talent
A scholarship set up in memory of a Mt Eden girl is available to talented young Aucklanders.
The Maxine Scholarship is for students aged 15 to 20 who are interested in education, art, dance, drama, music, fashion or sport.
Mt Eden Village Mainstreet Business Association secretary Claire Siddens, one of the brains behind the scholarship, says the aim is to finance people to pursue their talent.
It will fund up to $2000 in services or materials that are not available through Study-Link’s course-related costs scheme.
“The scholarship is there for people to do something that is perhaps a little out of the ordinary,” she says.
One past recipient used the scholarship for fencing equipment when he made it to an international level.
Another, a national swimming representative, used the scholarship for lessons.
The scholarship was set up by the business association in memory of Maxine van der Velden, who was just 19 when she was the victim of a tragic accident.
Maxine was in her first year of an art history degree at Auckland University.
She was well-known in the Mt Eden Village community, which was hit hard by the tragedy.
Maxine worked in one of the village’s shops and her parents run a business there.
The business association saw a scholarship as a meaningful way to honour Maxine’s potential and her popularity.
“Maxine had her whole life before her and the trust would really like to provide the opportunity for others to follow their dreams,” Ms Siddens says.
But she says finding applicants has been a challenge because people don’t know the scholarship exists.
She says the money is there, funded by community events, and the directors are eager to make a grant.
Up to five scholarships are awarded each year. The next closing dates for applications is May 25.
Application forms are available through the Mt Eden Village Mainstreet Business Association website at www. mounteden.co.nz. – Jessica Rice is an AUT journalism