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 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 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 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 .....Thank you very much 


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