The Ari Ariaratnam Education and Training Fund was established by the Board of Directors of Focus for Ethnic Women in 2003 in honour of Ari Ariaratnam, one of the founders of FEW and the first Executive Director, upon her retirement after 15 years of service. It was set up to celebrate her commitment to assisting immigrant visible minority women and is consistent with the vision and mission of FEW.
Immigrant and visible minority women experience multiple barriers to education, which prevent them from achieving their hopes and dreams for a better education and a higher quality of life. The Ari Ariaratnam Education and Training Fund bestows awards annually to address these obstacles on a continuum of needs basis. The flexible approach to awarding is based on the principles of equity, unique life situation, and clearly established goals. Award recipients are then able to use the award to assist with the financial costs that come with gaining higher education and training.
The Fund supports individuals who have met the prerequisites of an education or training program at an accredited Canadian institution, applied to the program and is subsequently accepted to the program. The amount awarded for each applicant will be a maximum of $500, with up to 3 awards given per year.