NAACP is proud to announce its partnership with Walmart to provide the Empowering a Better Tomorrow scholarship in the form of twenty $5,000 awards for a total of $100,000. The first of its kind between the two organizations, the scholarships will assist in creating pathways for those formerly incarcerated or those who have recently been convicted and have completed their sentence. Individuals best positioned to receive the scholarship will exhibit qualities of leadership, commitment to improving society, and a desire to give back to their community.
"The potential of our nation lies within the people and the promise of life and liberty," said Derrick Johnson, president and CEO, NAACP. "Our partnership aims to curtail recidivism while providing support to formerly incarcerated individuals. We must offer a roadmap to those that are seeking to contribute to society in a meaningful way."
The NAACP recognizes the intentional and overdue support needed for formerly incarcerated citizens to thrive. This partnership delivers against the organization's mission to secure all persons' political, educational, social, and economic equality. It is well-documented that a lack of support systems for the formerly incarcerated has contributed to long-term unemployment, recidivism, and a host of other systemic issues. The work of the NAACP aims to shine a spotlight on the growing need for society to reevaluate our approach to the treatment of those formerly incarcerated and all other persons that have been marginalized.
"The challenges returning citizens of color face when furthering their education and careers can feel insurmountable," said Regine Moore, Director, Constituent Relations, Walmart. "This scholarship was created to aid and give hope in overcoming barriers. There is so much more that needs to be done to provide support to this community, and this is a worthy step towards helping them reach their goals."
Applications for the scholarships will open on December 9, 2021, and close on May 21, 2022. Eligibility requirements can be found on the application portal. Applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible to ensure applications are received within the submission timeframe.