TORONTO, ON – June 06, 2013 – The Joe Carter Classic and Children’s Aid Foundation are pleased to announce Jessica Burke-Trebell of Oshawa, ON and Eleazer Muacasso-Shour of Waterloo, ON as this year’s recipients of Joe Carter Scholarships. Jessica and Eleazer have each been awarded $5000 for post-secondary education based on a combination of their academic achievement, community involvement and personal essays, which they will formally receive on June 18, 2013 at the Joe Carter Classic charity golf tournament held at Eagles Nest Golf Club in Maple, ON.
“I want to congratulate Jessica and Eleazer and wish them continued success in their studies,” said Joe Carter, event co-chair and former Toronto Blue Jays star. “I’m truly in awe of all that they have accomplished, having overcome such incredible odds and adversity. It’s a great honour to play a part in helping them gain a better future.”
“We want to break the cycle of abuse, neglect, abandonment, and poverty,” added Joe Canavan, chairman and interim CEO of the Children’s Aid Foundation. “We believe that education empowers young people helping them heal, build self-esteem and better enable them to reach their full potential.”
Jessica, a Crown Ward, came to the Children’s Aid as an infant and was placed in a foster home until being able to be cared for by her grandparents. Initially struggling in school and at home, Jessica became a determine student and athlete to help cope with the loss of her grandfather during her grade 10 year. She credits her change in focus to education and athletics with turning her life around. Jessica recently graduated from the University of Windsor with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminology and also completed a Graduate Diploma in Education at the University of the Sunshine Coast in Australia. In September 2013 she will begin a Master of Education degree at Nipissing University.
Fleeing civil war in his native Angola, Eleazer came to Canada with his family as a young child. When his mother’s refugee claim was denied, she returned to Angola with his sister and left Eleazer and his younger brother to be raised by relatives, believing they would have a better life in Canada. Unfortunately, his relatives could not provide permanent care, and he and his brother were placed in a foster home. Overcoming significant separation issues, as well as language and culture barriers, Eleazer dedicated himself to school and graduated from high school with honours. The Joe Carter Scholarship will allow him to complete the third year of his Honours Bachelor of Business Administration degree at Wilfrid Laurier University this fall.
“Jessica and Eleazer are two remarkable individuals who serve as inspirational role models to us all,” said James Dodds, event co-chair and TD Bank Group executive. “We’re honoured to name them as this year’s Joe Carter Scholarship recipients.”