Saturday, March 23, 2019, Soroptimist International of Norwalk/Santa Fe Springs presented $6,000 in cash grants to help five woman improve their economic situation. The awards ceremony was held at the Norwalk Doubletree Hotel. First place recipient Ashley Ross, 29, will use the cash award to complete her certification as a psychiatric technician at Cypress College, where she is majoring in nursing. The Norwalk/Santa Fe Springs Soroptimists chose Ross because of her optimistic attitude, her diligence in overcoming obstacles and the excellent recommendations she received. Ashley has a two-year-old daughter. Ms.Ross will now advance to the Soroptimist Desert Coast Region level, where recipients receive additional financial awards.
The remaining three Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women were presented to Melissa Hamby, Desiree Montoya, and Shaunise Price. Ms. Hamby, 28, is studying psychology at Cypress College, while raising her 9 year old daughter. Ms. Montoya, 28, will complete her teaching credential at CSU Fullerton in 2020. Ms. Montoya has a three-year-old son. Ms. Price, 33, is raising a son and daughter while attending Cerritos College with the goal of becoming a Preschool Director.
The Live Your Dream Award provides women who serve as the primary wage earners for their families with the financial resources to offset costs associated with their efforts to attain higher education or additional skills and training. The award can be used for tuition, books, childcare, carfare or any other education-related expense.
Soroptimist International of Norwalk also presented a $1000 award to Deborah Ixchel Perez, a female veteran student at Cerritos College. Perez served in the U.S. Marine Corps for 9 years as a musician and Substance Abuse Control Officer . Her goal is to earn a Doctorate in Physical Therapy, and work as a Physical Therapist for Veterans Affairs.
Written by Marilee Stefenhagen