AAUW: Making a Difference with Local Scholarships

Candace Cox

Annual Fundraising Drive Supports College Pursuits for Women in Southeast Valley

The Southeast Valley Branch of the American Association of University Women kicks off its annual drive to support local scholarships in February, part of the group’s mission to advance equity for women and girls.

In the past 10 years, the local group has raised nearly $20,000 to fund 17 scholarships that have helped local young women pursue their college education. Scholarship donations have come from members and local residents and businesses throughout the Southeast Valley, including Chandler, Gilbert, Sun Lakes, Queen Creek, and San Tan Valley.

“As our lives have been disrupted by the pandemic over the past several months, many people are considering what they can do to have a positive impact locally,” said Candace Cox, branch co-president. “What better way than through helping deserving local high school and college students who need financial support to pursue their dreams?”

The pandemic prevents the branch from hosting its annual scholarship fundraising dinner event in February, but email inquiries to [email protected] are welcomed to obtain more information on how to donate to its local scholarship fund.

As part of its scholarship fundraising awareness, the branch is hosting a free virtual presentation for the public at 5 p.m. on Feb. 15, with Kathleen Duncan. She is co-founder of Duncan Family Farms. In 2012, she began volunteering with the Amores de Peñasco Children’s Crisis Shelter in Puerto Peñasco, Mexico, also known as Rocky Point. She and her husband Arnott launched their Comprehensive Support for Children of Rocky Point charitable organization in 2015 to help at-risk girls and boys access educational opportunities. After providing support for 72 students in its first year, the program continues to grow.

“This is an inspirational example of how individuals can make a difference to help young people, especially girls, succeed academically,” Cox said. “We invite the public to support our local youth in the Valley with their donations to our scholarship fund.”

To hear Duncan’s talk, attend via Zoom, and to donate to the local scholarship fund, contact us at [email protected]. Active since 1989, the Southeast Valley Branch of AAUW includes members from Chandler, Gilbert, Sun Lakes, Queen Creek, and San Tan Valley. Membership is open to all with an associate or higher degree from an accredited college or university. To join as a member or for more information on the Southeast Valley Branch of AAUW, go to www.southeastvalley-az.aauw.net.