Tammy Neuman explains Bright Beginnings Foundations during Canada Day celebrations.

Seeking a bright future for Surrey’s youth

Foundation looks to help low-income students achieve educational goals

For nearly 30 years, Tammy Neuman has been helping kids succeed.

While working as an elementary school teacher in the Surrey School District for 27 years, Neuman was always involved in anti-poverty issues at her school.

She would buy winter coats for kids in need, provide lunch boxes when she could and even helped a student who had been evicted from their home find a new place to live.

Recently she retired from her teaching career due to health reasons but felt she still had a desire to give back.

That’s when she, along with three other colleagues, started the Bright Beginnings Foundation to help give students living in poverty an opportunity for a post-secondary education.

The goal of the foundation is to provide deserving Surrey students with tuition, books, accommodation, food and even transportation to and from school through to the completion of their chosen program, to help them gain employment and to break the cycle of poverty.

“In Surrey we have more than 45,000 young adults who live in poverty and this may become generational. And unless they have a post-secondary education, the cycle will not be broken and that’s where we come in,” said Neuman.

“We have a grand scheme, we would like to be able to help perhaps five kids a year with a whole mentorship village, too.”

So far through private donations and some funding through the Surrey Teachers Association, the group has been able to help one young single mother buy safety equipment and tools so she could attend the carpentry program at the Kwantlen Polytechnic University trades campus in Cloverdale.

“They bought me $1,000 worth of stuff that I really needed, a new pouch, a hammer,” said Rowan McAlpine, 18, who graduated from Guildford Park Secondary in June.”

“It made such a huge difference to me, I was able to do the job properly with the proper tools, it saved me so much money.”

Recommendations and applications for financial help can come from various sources, including school counselors, and funding will be based on need with students required to provide a copy of their transcripts along with proof of income.

The group is still hoping to secure more sustained funding and is looking for anyone who would be willing to help.

“We are looking for partners, not only financial, but also partners who will help us network, host fundraisers, mentor – there are any number of ways to help,” she said.

For more information on how you can help go to http://brightbeginningsfoundation.ca/

Surrey North Delta Leader

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sources, City of White Rock launch Thanksgiving Food Drive

Volunteers, donations sought for annual food-bank initiative

Surrey man charged with series of break-ins in Surrey, Langley

David Sinh Liu is facing 10 charges related to seven recent break-ins

COVID-19 exposures at Surrey schools: An updated list

Fraser Health has created a new webpage listing COVID-19 cases in schools

Future of Massey Tunnel replacement in the air after snap election called

On Friday the ministry said it was identifying property ‘necessary for future infrastructure improvements’

COVID-19: 4 more deaths, 366 new cases in B.C. since Friday

A total of 8,208 people in B.C. have tested positive for COVID-19 since January

Group wants Parliament, courts to hold social media to same standard as publishers

Daniel Bernhard made the comments shortly after Friends of Canadian Broadcasting released a research paper

COVID-19 testing lineup wraps around block in Chilliwack

Testing lineup includes seniors, children and their parents as demand seems to surge

B.C.’s Chase Claypool catches first NFL touchdown pass

Abbotsford grad establishes new record for longest scrimmage TD by a Canadian

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

B.C. has highest number of active COVID-19 cases per capita, federal data shows

B.C. currently has 1,803 active cases after weeks of COVID-19 spikes in the province

181 days gone: Family continues to look for man last seen in RCMP custody 6 months ago

Brandon Sakebow’s last known location was leaving Mission RCMP cell, police say; family has doubts

Most Read