Mazi Tazazo's application for financial aid was received by ESRA via the social welfare department of the university. It was discussed during one of the Welfare Committee's monthly meetings and everyone felt that this young Ethiopian student was really determined to get on in life. Her father died five years ago and she lives with her mother and four brothers and sisters under very difficult financial circumstances. Despite this she did very well at school and showed a determination to succeed.
She gained a place at the Herzliya Interdisplinary Center to study law and business management but found it very difficult to pay the tuition fees. Mazi found a full time job 5 days a week, 10 hours a day and during her first year at university studied long distance, unable to attend lectures as she had to be at work. She found herself in the position of having to decide whether to carry on with her studies or to give everything up because of lack of funds. At this point a donor approached ESRA and suggested helping individual students who are struggling financially to finish their studies.
ESRA then selected ten students from the hundreds who apply to ESRA for help, who were all very needy, and together with the donor interviewed each one. Out of these ten, the donor chose six students to help with a monthly stipend which changed their lives considerably. It meant that all of them could work less and give more attention to their studies.
At a follow-up interview a year later, Mazi said that at last she felt like a student as she could now attend lectures and that as a result all her marks had dramatically improved. Also this year Mazi's tuition has been mainly covered by a special fund organized by the University.
The donor has decided to continue helping these six students for a further year.