Beedie Luminaries recipient
Credit: Beedie Luminaries. Clare Douglas, a 2021 recipient of a SPARK scholarship

The foundation, launched by property developer Ryan Beedie, is donating as much as $1.2 million in SPARK awards as it expands its network of community partners

For some single parents in B.C. looking to further their education, attending university or college is about to get easier.

That’s because local scholarship foundation Beedie Luminaries is doubling its number of SPARK awards. Beedie Luminaries founder Ryan Beedie, president of the eponymous Vancouver real estate developer, made the announcement on National Single Parent Day.

For 2022, SPARK (Single Parent Award for Resilience and Knowledge) will give 30 scholarships worth up to $40,000 apiece to single parents facing financial adversity. Recipients can put those funds toward full- or part-time studies at B.C. post-secondary institutions.

“Last year, we received an incredible amount of compelling applications from single parents facing barriers to higher education, which inspired us to double the number of scholarships that we will be awarding this year,” Beedie said in a release. “We are also expanding the SPARK program across B.C. via our growing network of community partners, which will allow more parents across the province to upgrade their skills and open more doors for themselves and their families.”

Ryan Beedie
Credit: Beedie Luminaries. Ryan Beedie, founder of the Beedie Luminaries scholarship foundation

Besides demonstrating financial need, SPARK applicants must be the single parent of a Beedie Luminaries Grade 12 scholarship recipient or be referred by one of Beedie Luminaries’ community partners.

This year, there are 12 new partners: Atira, the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres, the BC Council for Families, the Cridge Centre for the FamilyFamily Services of the North Shore, Healthiest Babies Possible and Youth Pregnancy Parenting Program (Vancouver Coastal Health), MOSAIC, New Relationship Trust, South Okanagan Immigrant and Community ServicesUp With Women, the Urban Native Youth Association and Westcoast Family Centres.

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Those groups join seven existing community partners: Family Services of Greater Vancouver, the Immigrant Services Society of BC, the Minerva Foundation for BC Women, Mom2Mom, Mothers Matter, YMCA of Greater Vancouver and YWCA Metro Vancouver.

Applications for this year’s edition of the SPARK program close on April 21. To learn more, click here.