Scholarship recipient committed to pay-it-forward
Jarvis Ambaka grew up playing soccer in Kisumu, a Kenyan city on the eastern shore of Lake Victoria. Although he was eventually selected to join Kenya’s National Soccer League, that opportunity fell through when he refused to bribe a coach to let him play. Now a member of Trinity Western University Spartans Men’s Soccer team, the third-year human kinetics major is adjusting to the North American game—in particular, its colder and less pleasant playing conditions.
But Jarvis is not studying at TWU simply to play soccer. Although he initially expected merely to finish his degree, he says that he’s received much more than university credits during his time here: “I’m not only getting the degree that I wanted, but I’m also growing in my faith.” Not only has he been invited to participate in multiple mission activities, but recently he was able to attend a faith and sports conference in Ottawa that challenged him to live out his faith through sport.
Jarvis recognizes that these blessings are not his alone; he hopes to take the skills he’s learning at TWU and use them to benefit his home community back in Africa. “I really want to go back home to share what God gave me and brought me to Canada to do,” he said.
“This perspective is shared by many international students at TWU,” said Darlene Heriot, TWU’s Scholarship and Planned Giving Manager. In particular, a group of six international students who will be sharing their stories at the University’s upcoming African-Cambodian & International Student Fundraising Dinner. Although each one of them has faced challenging circumstances—like poverty, hunger, or loss of family—they are all committed to bringing these blessings back to their home countries.
These students are able to study at TWU thanks in a large part to a donor that wanted TWU to sponsor students who were willing to commit to going back to their countries. The generosity of donors, combined with the proceeds of fundraising dinners, has made it possible for students like Jarvis to be transformed by TWU’s educational culture and then use those blessings to bless others.
According to Heriot, last year’s event raised over $60,000. The hope is that this year’s event is equally successful and will enable TWU to sponsor other students that desire to minister to their countries’ needs.
Learn more about the event, including silent auction, dinner, and performance by TWU’s own Shy Sharity, at TWU Impact.
Tickets for the May 25th dinner are still available. To purchase them, please contact Tracey Byle at (604) 513-2033 or firstname.lastname@example.org.