Ten years ago, we mourned the loss of Shelton Davis, Sandy to his friends and family. His wife Mary and children Rebecca and Peter, during their time of grief, asked us if we could help them establish a fund in his honor. Since Sandy had done anthropological fieldwork in the western highland region of Guatemala, such a fund was to help Maya youth in that region with their education. As the Maya Educational Foundation (MEF) already had a program underway in Todos Santos Cuchumatan, the idea became a plan, the plan became action and reality.
Since 2010, promoting education for Maya children from poor economic backgrounds in that region has been the mission of the Shelton H. Davis Memorial Fund, also known as the Shelton H. Davis Scholarship Fund. In these past ten years, the Fund has allowed a continuous group of students to attend school, on average five students, now up to seven. Friends, colleagues, and family have been the core group of support to this fund that has over this past decade raised just over 100,000 dollars, an astonishing accomplishment from a group effort of caring individuals. The scholarship students were children whose families would not have sent them to higher levels of schooling had it not been for the scholarships they received. The children have grown into young adults and now all of the students have completed the levels they wanted to achieve, as far as entering university.
At university level, costs for each student go up dramatically from what they were when the students were in elementary, middle or high school. The redefined thrust of the Fund from 2020 on will be to provide university scholarships for students from the Santa Eulalia/Todos Santos region, with a fundraising target of $2,500 per year per student. University level is much sought after in Guatemala and hard to obtain with most Mayas lacking the resources.
If you would like to support this goal and want to make a 10th year anniversary donation to the Fund in Sandy’s honor, you can do so safely at our website at www.mayaedufound.org and be sure to put Shelton Davis in the dedication line. We will let Sandy’s family know of your gift. Thank you!
Double your Gift!
We have just received a challenge grant from two good friends of Sandy’s. They will match any donations made to MEF for the Fund, up to a combined total of $10,000, from now till the end of June.
Mary, Rebecca and Peter, visited with all the MEF scholarship students in Todos Santos, five of them supported by the Fund. They kindly gave backpacks and supplies to all the children in the group.
A few years back the Shelton H. Davis Memorial Fund accepted funding a scholarship for a special young woman, a student from Santa Eulalia, the township where Sandy did his fieldwork. Her name is Eulalia and she is almost completely blind. She wants to become a psychologist and is currently studying psychology at the University of San Carlos in Quetzaltenango.
The Fund provided assistance with eye doctor’s visits. More recently it funded the purchase of a laptop equipped with special software for the blind to help Eulalia in her studies.
The Fund is giving this young Maya woman and the other students a chance and they are all very grateful for that opportunity.
Donating to MEF is easy, by check or by phone. For safe, on-line donations, one-time or recurring, please go to www.mayaedufound.org and click on the orange Donate Now button below. Our partner Network for Good will process your donations to MEF securely and quickly and give you an instant e-receipt. Consider becoming a recurring donor. Your regular, tax-deductible contributions to MEF, even modest amounts, will add up and make a difference in the lives of Maya students. Thank you.