Dr. Venicia Cruickshank speaks with Rula Brown about PALAS the first to graduate as Medical Doctor 3 years on the program (UWI). Talks about her economic struggles

UWI Medical student, Venicia Cruickshank is the first student to graduate as a Medical Doctor from the PALAS Program, she has been in the program for 3 years. It has been quite a challenge economicall to complete her degree. In 2014-2015 Venicia received ANN & CHRIS PAYNE ACADEMIC SCHOLARSHIP from PALAS. 

PALAS is a Non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization as defined by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which means your donation/contribution is tax deductible. 

The Peace and Love Academic Scholarship (PALAS) program was established in December, 2010 after the brutal killing in Portmore, Jamaica of young reggae artist, Vanessa Campbell. An initial scholarship program was created as the SSSJamz/Vanessa Campbell Academic Scholarship to assist high school students from her Alma mater, Bridgeport High School. Please donate online at www.PALAS1.org

AMAZING STORY (JAMAICA) : Yemalla Edwards, Once Homeless UWI Medical Student, now PALAS Recipient and future Neurosurgeon Granted US Multiple Entry Visa…Now Has 2 opportunities for the Summer (2015) in the USA to shadow two Physicians.... In the summer 2014 Yemalla worked enough money in North Carolina, USA and he used all the earnings to purchase a prosthetic leg for him mom who lost her leg from diabetes. She used to be a vendor at Coronation Market in Kingston.

PALAS news by Rula Brown Published April 30, 2015

Once homeless medical student who currently attends UWI-Mona, Yemalla Edwards, recently received a multiple entry Visa to the USA. He will be travelling to Atlanta, Georgia or Maryland, USA on May 16, 2015 to work for 5 weeks in the medical field which will give great stock to his experience/resume.

Yemalla Edwards, after pinning ceremony in 2014  at UWI
This was made possible after Mr. Edwards contacted PALAS Founder/Executive Director, Rula Brown to assist him to procure a Visa to visit the USA. Yemalla and Rula worked the process and subsequently he was awarded a multiple entry visa to the USA.

Yemalla applied for one of the coveted 2014/15 Peace and Love Academic Scholarship (PALAS) and was successful in his quest.

Rula Brown first met Yemalla at the 2013/14 awards ceremony at the UWI-Mona Campus when he was introduced by one of his instructor, Mr. Blake. At the time Yemalla had just completed his first year with a 3.83/4.00 GPA. He continues to maintain 3.15/4.00 GPA.

Yemalla was facing a massive challenge to support himself financially, and for the most part, did not have anywhere to sleep and not much to eat while on campus. He was able to rest his head at nights sleeping at gazebos, stair steps, anywhere there was seat and light on (UWI) campus. His formal home is in Old Harbour, St. Catherine where his mom, who lost one of her leg from diabetes, and seven of his siblings reside. His father drives a water truck in Jamaica.  
In the summer 2014 Yemalla worked enough money in North Carolina, USA and he used all the funds to purchase a prosthetic leg for him mom. When asked what his mom’s reaction was, she happily said, "He (Yemalla) was her first child to go to college, and the first one to fly on a plane." His mom used to sell food products at Coronation market in Kingston.
Rula Brown, PALAS Founder presents Yemalla Edwards
 a computer and PALAS package
 at 2014 UWI presentation  in Jamaica
“Throughout my years I never met a team of people (PALAS) that is so supportive and interested in the well being of students. Mr Brown is one of the few mentors I have; he has helped me to grow personally and to build my confidence. I am now a more bold and assertive person, someone that is more polite and out spoken, previously I was just a shy, reserved individual.” Yemalla said.... “Life is what you make it! Therefore don`t go planting torns and expect to reap oranges.”
Yemalla's unshakable strong faith in God must have directed him to Rula at the UWI campus on August 22, 2013. Subsequently, Rula was able to reach out to a number of friends and listeners to his internet radio show on RulaBrownNetwork.com for support to this brilliant student. Rula was able to donate JA$125,000.00, a place to live at no cost to him, cell phone and a tablet computer that was donated by PALAS advisor, Mr. Patrick Campbell. 

Additionally, Ms. Judy Grant, a sister of PALAS Board member, Jackie Brown offered to let Mr. Edwards reside at her home near UWI-Mona campus. Each month Rula sends Yemalla a small donation to help out with utilities at the home. It has worked out great for him, now that he is able to study under better conditions.

PALAS Board member, Ms. Donna Myrie was very elated when she got the news about Yemalla getting the chance to travel to the states, "God bless you and all who saw fit to extend their support for Mr. Edwards," she said. Reggae artist and PALAS contributor, NOVLETTE FELLOWS aka NOVEL-T said she was jumping for joy when she got the news. I just say, "Thank you Lord, God bless him!  He’s such a worthy student and an example for all of us to take notes from." Despite the seemingly impossible, Yemalla did what he had to do to remain in school and still maintained good grades!

Yemalla Edwards is ready to observe
Neurosurgeon, Dr. Carl Bruce
perform brain surgery operation
 on a cancer patient
at UWI-Hospital in Jamaica
Recently Yemalla was in the operating theater at UWI-Hospital to observe the Caribbean’s best rated neurosurgeon at work, Dr. Carl Bruce do a brain surgery operation on a cancer patient. He was very excited for the opportunity to observe, for the first time such a rare event. He said that he learned so much, it was truly amazing. Yemalla will graduate with his Medical Degree in 2018, ultimately he will specialize as a Neurosurgeon.

In the past 6 months Rula has worked assiduously with Dr. Evelyn Richardson, PALAS Advisor and CEO of the Caribbean Radio Show to secure job opportunity in the medical field for Yemalla. Dr. Richardson efforts resulted in a position for him via one of her associates in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.
Rula was also able to secure a position for him in Alpharetta, GA with his personal Medical Doctor, Dharmaraj Patil. The goal is to have Yemalla do at least a 5-week internship in Atlanta, GA or Maryland in summer 2015 to shadow these Physicians and learn.  
Lana Walker of Roswell, GA, CEO at Laureate Medical Group Emory University  has been a super supporter of Yemalla, she is helping to secure living accommodations via her networking with Lorna Kirlew in DC/Maryland and Amy Grant in Canada. This clinical exposure will yet again award him another opportunity in 2 years to complete his Fellowship, Residency in Surgery, Post Graduate in Neurosurgery and Pediatric Neurosurgery. 
Lorna is coordinating and planning to help find residency for Yemalla in Maryland/DC. PALAS board members and Lana Walker will pitch in to purchase his round trip plane fare to and from Jamaica. While if he lands in Maryland/DC Lana is making reservation to lend her support for him to stay for the five weeks.
You might also add that Yemalla's success is an implication and commitment of PALAS' outreach to students who are in desperate need for that financial nudge and assistance to get them over the hardship hurdle. Hence, PALAS is appealing to all, to donate to a worthy cause at www.PALAS1.org and, in doing so; we are ‘Preserving Young Minds for Posterity’. PALAS has awarded 187 scholarships over the past 4 years valued at JA$9.9 million (~US$95,000.00). PALAS goal is to award 125 scholarships/computers in 2015/16. PALAS online application starts May 1, 2015 through June 15, 2015.

You may Partner with PALAS (PWP) by donating a minimum of $350.00 to have a scholarship in your name, loved one or your company each year. We are seeking donations urgently so any amount is appreciated; no amount is too small to contribute to our efforts, $1.00 will go a long way. Please donate online at www.PALAS1.org or Send check to: 

PALAS, PO Box 5461, Alpharetta GA 30023 USA. PALAS is a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) organization, headquartered in Alpharetta, GA. You may also send funds to PALAS via PAYPAL to PALAS at peaceandlovescholarship@gmail.com .....Thank you very much 

Jamaica Observer (4/26/15) : PALAS online scholarship application opens May 1..."PALAS expects to receive over 300 applications this year, and it's heartbreaking every time we have to overlook someone who meets the criteria but we just don't have the budget to facilitate them," Rula Brown said...

Jamaica Observer Published April 26, 2015    
PEACE and Love Academic Scholarship, Inc (PALAS) will open its online application process this Friday, May 1 to June 15, 2015.
This year, the Atlanta-based non-profit organisation is targeting 125 scholarship recipients as conceptualiser Ruel 'Rula' Brown is hoping to impact even more lives by awarding scholarships to financially needy students, and honour outstanding academic performances by students in Jamaica and the wider Caribbean.
"We hope to accomplish this mainly through our Partnering With Palas (PWP) initiative, where a scholarship can be awarded in a loved one's name or business," Brown told Career & Education.
"PALAS expects to receive over 300 applications this year, and it's heartbreaking every time we have to overlook someone who meets the criteria but we just don't have the budget to facilitate them," he said.
The scholarship opportunity is extended to students in high school and university. The application guideline requires the applicant to complete an online application, submit their current grades, along with their 300-500 word essay. The students are also asked to provide a list of all relevant extra-curricular activities including volunteering, church work, hospital visitation, and involvement in school or rotary clubs.
Acknowledging that each year brings its own set of chanllenges, Brown says he doesn't let it deter him.
"Each year when I see the smile, joy shown by the students it gives me a wonderful feeling. Additionally, to know that many of the students don't have an outlet to subsidise their education is all the motivation the PALAS team needs."
Since the organisation's inception in December 2010, PALAS has awarded 187 scholarships to honour the memory of student, reggae artiste and aspiring sound technician 18-year-old Vanessa Campbell who was brutally murdered in Portmore, Jamaica on November 20, that year.
The fifth annual PALAS Awards presentation will take place in late August in Kingston. more


Atlanta Base Non-Profit Organization PALAS, Announces 5th Annual Scholarship Program to Benefit 125 Students in Jamaica and the Caribbean

www.PALAS1.org....ATLANTA, GA – April 13, 2015: Peace and Love Academic Scholarship, Inc. (PALAS) will open its online application process from May 1, 2015 to June 15, 2015. This year’s program will award 125 scholarships to financially needy students, and honor outstanding academic performances by students in Jamaica and the Caribbean. Since the organization’s inception in December 2010, PALAS has awarded 187 scholarships to honor the memory of student, reggae artist and aspiring sound technician; 18 year-old Vanessa Campbell who was brutally murdered in Portmore, Jamaica on November 20, 2010.

According to Executive Director, Mr, Rula Brown, “this year’s goal is to award 125 scholarships and computers to PALAS 2015 winning recipients”. This academic scholarship opportunity is extended to students in High School, University/Tertiary and Re-awardees. The application guideline will require the applicant to complete an online application, submit their current grades along with a written 300-500 word essay. The students are also required to provide a list of all relevant school extra – curricular activities, (volunteering, church, hospital, school clubs, rotary clubs, etc.). PALAS will hold its 5th annual awards presentation in Kingston, Jamaica in late August, 2015.
PALAS has dedicated its human and financial resources to help make a difference in the lives of underserved children in Jamaica, West Indies as well as the wider Caribbean region. The scholarship program is dedicated to recognise and honor outstanding academic performances. PALAS award a number of scholarships on annual bases to students residing in the Caribbean region.

The mission of PALAS is the pursuit of the following principles, also known as CERPS: 
 Commitment: PALAS wants to inspire pro-social friendships, strong interpersonal skills, and instill a sense of hope in the future. 
 Empowerment: PALAS wants to provide the necessary tools for the student, in the form of education to uplift and empower themselves. 
 Responsibility: The focus of PALAS is to empower youth in establishing goals and following through on commitments. 
 Possibility: PALAS wants to expand the perspective of young people to make them aware of life's possibilities. 
 Support: An individual is dramatically influenced by their support system. PALAS wants to surround young people in a caring, inclusive learning environment. 

PALAS embrace and enforces our organization’s core values of accountability, transparency and honesty. Those are our firm belief and the manner in which we operate our organization. Therefore, all donated funds are invested in our scholarship program. 

Please help us in "Preserving Young Minds for Posterity" by visiting our website www.PALAS1.org and make your online donation through June 30, 2015 or send a check payable to PALAS, P.O. Box 5461, Alpharetta GA 30023 USA. PALAS is a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) organization. As such, all donations are tax deductible. Please send email inquiry to peaceandlovescholarship@gmail.com or you may call 770-715-0224. 

For further information about PALAS including special sponsorship opportunities for a scholarship in your name, the name of a loved one or your business as a sponsoring Partner with PALAS (PWP), please visit us at www.palas1.org

PALAS awards honours top students with J$3.6 million scholarship....Hon. Lisa Hanna & Attorney Patrick Campbell delivered powerful messages to 72 awardees. Winsome Benjamin sang her heart out to a capacity audience and Daddy UROY presented 10 of the scholarships (JAMAICA OBSERVER 9/7/14)....PALAS goal is to award 125 scholarships in 2015-2016 in JAMAICA.

by Cecelia Campbell-Livingston (Jamaica Observer 9/7/14)

NOW in its fourth year, the Peace and Love Academic Scholarship (PALAS) Awards were presented at the Chemistry Lecture Theatre of the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus on Saturday, August 23, 2014.
Rula Brown presents appreciation certificate to Lisa Hanna
Seventy-two grateful students from secondary and tertiary institutions were presented with scholarship packages for the 2014/15 academic year.
PALAS Director Patrick Campbell, now a successful attorney in the United States, told the awardees that he is a product of "Mountain View, below Jarrett Lane" and he made it.
"I see myself in all of you...it's not where you came from, it's where you are going," he said. Campbell offered pointers for success to the students, advising them to make time for their studies and never to allow their circumstances to dictate their future.
"Don't let other people set your limit; be determined to do what you want to do. Set your goals and set them high. Emulate successful people, live with principles and integrity, give back to your community, appreciate all the best things in life," were his sage words.
Gold Star winner, Maria Attarwala receives
 Alex Panton Academic Scholarship 

from Lisa Hanna's son Alex Panton
His sentiments were echoed by the keynote speaker, Minister of Youth and Culture Lisa Hanna, who encouraged awardees to be "courageous, leaving nothing to chance".
"It will take courage [and] unapologetic refusal to have anyone nozzle your voice. I can't tell you how to find it, but... commit to excellence, ensuring you serve others. Be the change you want to see in the world; when truth is on your side one is a majority," she said.
Hanna also urged students to follow their convictions. "Get involved in something, enjoy it, make mistakes -- it's OK, get comfortable in your skin. Ladies, discover yourselves, focus on your own desires and goals, get your heart broken, you will get over it. Embark on new journey... you have it in you," she encouraged.
Winsome Benjamin(L), Natasha & Patrick Campbell, 
Rula Brown, AnnP & PALAS board member
 Milton Galloway
PALAS founder Rula Brown broke down in tears while addressing the gathering. He spoke of one of the outstanding recipients, Yemalla Edwards, who for a while was homeless but still maintained great grades as a first-year medical student at the University of the West Indies (UWI).
Brown finally managed to get the words out: "If he can do it, you can all do it. Don't give up," before a fresh wave of tears overcame him.
Daddy URoy presents to 
UWI student, Mishae Kinlocke
Special mention was made of the gold star winners, who impressed with their grades and essays and received laptops/tablets.
Javanney Campbell of Clan Carthy High School emerged top high school awardee, while Maria Attarwala, medical student at UWI, was the gold star winner for the tertiary level.
The total value of the scholarships handed out was J$3.6 million. PALAS awarded 187 scholarships in the past 4 years valued J$9.8 million, and their goal is to award 125 scholarships and 125 computers to the 2015-2016 scholarship recipients.
—by Cecelia Campbell-Livingston (Jamaica Observer 9/7/14). more

IN JAMAICA: 30 years old, Coswell Barnett, Blind and Brilliant - Spanish Teacher Excels At Clan Carthy High School Despite Visual Impairment....PALAS Gold Star student, Javanney Campbell figured prominently

Corey Robinson, Staff Reporter Published: Sunday | January 11, 2015
At 30 years old, Coswell Barnett is as respected and revered by his students as much as any of his teaching colleagues at the Clan Carthy High School in St Andrew, and it is not just because he is blind...
Coswell Barnett (right) having fun with his young charges.
Coswell Barnett (right) having fun with his young charges.
Somehow, Barnett, a Spanish teacher who makes his way from staffroom to classroom with the help of a cane, has found a way to connect with his students, to gain and maintain their interest even while not being able to see their faces.
And he does this while assisting them to distinctions in Spanish at the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) level, pushing them to 11 medals at annual Spanish festivals, and while helping to prepare the school's quiz team.
Javanney Campbell of Clan Carthy
receives his PALAS package from
veteran DJ UROY at PALAS event
As for the students, they show Barnett the respect he deserves because he deals with them like 'a real man'; he can identify each of them by name - with just one sentence they utter - his classes usually include the timeless high-school practice of desk drumming and singing, albeit in a foreign language, and maybe it's his story of perseverance against the odds.
"It's really about letting the students know that there is another way out in life apart from the negativity," Barnett told The Sunday Gleaner.
"Most of the students who I teach, and have taught, are from the inner-city communities. But I speak to them like 'a real man', a man from humble beginnings, and they are able to relate to me," said Barnett.
Proud students flank their teacher, Coswell Barnett, and display some of the certificates which he has helped them to achieve.
Proud students flank their teacher, Coswell Barnett, and
display some of the certificates which he has helped them to achieve.
"Especially the females, I say to them, 'look, you don't want to leave school not achieving at least a formal education at this level and become pregnant'.
"Because that is the reality of the lives of many young girls today. And for the males, I tell them, 'you don't want to end up becoming a don', because that is the order of the day in their neck of the woods," said Barnett. more