LIMBE, Cameroon, Oct. 22, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Herakles Farms, an American agriculture company focused on identifying and implementing solutions to important food security issues in Africa, today announced that it has awarded college scholarships to 26 Cameroonian students in a newly established merit-based program that recognizes the academic achievement of some of the nation's most promising undergraduates.
The scholarship fund is just one initiative within Herakles Farms' larger community development program that is designed to support the economic prosperity and growth of Cameroon, where it is developing a sustainable palm oil project. The scholarship fund is named in honor of the late Dr. Isidore Timti, who served as Herakles Farms' Country Director, and will provide unprecedented educational opportunities for students so that they may overcome the financial barriers that would otherwise hold them back from pursuing advanced education and career goals. Dr. Timti was a long-time champion of local capacity building, skills training and job creation, which are areas of priority that Herakles Farms integrates into every stage of its planning and development.
In its inaugural year, 26 students, selected through a competitive process, have been awarded a scholarship with full financial support from Herakles Farms. The scholarship provides tuition, books, accommodations, travel and housing expenses, as well as a stipend. Timti scholars are given the opportunity to attend the nation's most renowned and competitive colleges. Beneficiaries of the fund will also participate in paid internships during summer breaks and have the opportunity to join Herakles Farms as a full-time employee upon successful completion of their studies and internships.
"Herakles Farms is deeply committed to expanding our support for the people of Cameroon – especially those who reside near our palm oil project – not only through job creation, but also through our community development programs," said Bruce Wrobel, CEO of Herakles Farms. "The Dr. Isidore Timti Memorial Scholarship Fund will help the next generation of students become world-class leaders in the global economy. We hope the scholarships provide a foundation that enables them to achieve their academic goals."
Since the planting of its first nurseries in late 2010, Herakles Farms has been committed to environmentally and socially responsible projects that result in economic development and shared value for the people of Cameroon, especially those in the concession area. In the past year, Herakles Farms distributed 3,000 treated mosquito bed nets across three subdivisions to prevent malaria, distributed textbooks and work books to all 35 secondary schools of the Ndian Division, and provided free medical services to more than 3,000 people, including more than 345 surgical procedures, all with follow-up care.
"I am very happy for this scholarship because so many companies have been to our area, but I haven't seen this kind of gesture," said Mokobe Therese Mokossa, a student from Lipenja 1 attending the Catholic University Institute of the Diocese of Buea. "It shows that Herakles Farms has the interest of its concession areas at heart."
Areas of study eligible for the scholarship include: crop science; agronomy; engineering; forestry; environmental science; accounting, finance, marketing and business management; and nursing.
"I feel privileged to be chosen for the scholarship and I will endeavor to make the company proud," said Penda Theophile Kunangia, a Fabe student also attending Catholic University Institute of the Diocese of Buea. "My whole family is happy about this. I had no hope of continuing my studies due to family hardship. I am so happy for Herakles Farms because its presence in our community has brought a lot of development and I believe more changes are underway."
About Herakles Farms
Established in 2009, Herakles Farms is focused on identifying and implementing solutions to important food security issues in Africa. The management team has a track record of developing environmentally and socially sustainable projects that result in economic development in some of the least-developed African countries, and has received numerous awards for its work. Herakles Farms is guided by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) Performance Standards and Equator Principles. www.heraklesfarms.com
SOURCE Herakles Farms