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New American Scholars Awarded First-Ever Grant from New Hampshire Women’s Foundation for Women and Girls of Color

   New American Scholars


New American Scholars has been selected by New Hampshire Women’s Foundation as one of the first recipients of a grant initiative designed to support women and girls of color.

The inaugural fund, called the Women and Girls of Color Fund, gives New American Scholars a grant to launch a new digital platform that will better support the success of refugee students receiving services from the nonprofit.

“We are truly humbled by this valuable support of our mission,” said Riyah Patel, President and founder of New American Scholars. “Since our inception nearly one year ago, New American Scholars’ success has depended on the generosity of wonderful friends in the community who believe in the unlimited potential of our amazing kids and support the work we do.”

The new program, titled Ed-Tech, will empower New American Scholar tutors to work one-one-one with refugee students in a more personalized way where instructions, performance tracking and learning plans all adapt to individual student needs.

Subjects will include math, reading, writing, and English fluency, and will comprise of interactive activities, learning games and materials required for all learning tasks. Progress reports and assessments will be provided to parents to assist them in advocating for their child at school.

Funding supports launch of Ed-Tech during the 2022-2023 school year

New American Scholars will pilot the program to roughly 20 students initially, and then scale up to 100 students by the end of the 2022-2023 school year.

“Research has shown that technology-based adaptive learning systems create a successful and positive educational environment for students,” Patel said. “By giving refugee students a greater sense of autonomy in their learning, we believe they will gain confidence as they set and reach their goals.”

Patel added that tech-enabled learning promotes equity by breaking down socio-economic barriers to accessing education. Many of the refugee students served by New American Scholars face challenges in language as well as differences in learning style. Ed-Tech is designed to address areas where educational support is most needed.

Why an investment in woman and girls of color is important

Ed-Tech, along with the broader work of New American Scholars, fits into the investment New Hampshire Women’s Foundation made when they launched the Women and Girls of Color Fund.

New Hampshire is home to more than 7,500 refugees. Many refugee students are women and girls of color who face uncertainty as they adapt to their new home and new peer groups, adopt another language, and enter a foreign education system.

Despite the need for additional levels of support, nonprofits working in these areas historically aren’t funded at appropriate levels. Nationally, women and girls of color receive just .5% of all foundation giving, according to the New Hampshire Women’s Foundation website.

“Women and girls of color remain disproportionately impacted by many challenges in the Granite State, and investing in these community-based solutions is one of the best ways to advance equity and justice,” said New Hampshire Women’s Foundation CEO Tanna Clews. “Racial equity is inseparable from gender equity, and we remain committed as a funder to breaking down philanthropic barriers so that we can all thrive. Congratulations to the inaugural recipients of our Women and Girls of Color Fund!”

"We're ensuring that those who have historically had less voice, money and power have more of it," added Crystal Paradis, director of communications for New Hampshire Women’s Foundation.

The grant funding follows Patel being named by New Hampshire Women’s Foundation as a trailblazer at the organization’s annual GALA. Patel received this award at the event which also honored New Hampshire U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen.

“Each day, we endeavor to provide refugee youth with quality educational enrichment that both motivates and inspires, opening a whole new world of possibility and promise for success in their new homeland,” Patel said. “The New Hampshire Women’s Foundation has become a valued partner in that work, and we couldn’t be more grateful!”