about starfish scholarships

The Starfish Scholarships Mission


Starfish Scholarships awards a $1,000 (CAD) scholarship every year to a deserving student of the Olcott Memorial School in Chennai, India. The scholarships fund four years of post-secondary education, empowering students to gain valuable skills and to break through the cycle of poverty.

The scholarship serves as one of the few opportunities for recognition at the Olcott school. It recognizes academic excellence, leadership potential, and volunteerism. It is hoped that recipients of the award will become scholastic role models within the school's community, and inspire other students to achieve their dreams.

Starfish Scholarships embraces the philosophy that young people can have an impact on important global issues. Thus, its mission is two-fold: to provide educational opportunities to students living in poverty while simultaneously empowering young people in Canada and India to play a global leadership role.


Success Story

Our Roots- The Duke of Edinburgh's Award

Starfish Scholarships was founded and built by Gold Award Holders of the Duke of Edinburgh leadership program. Our board of directors and volunteers are all participants or graduates of the award program in India or Canada.

Our scholarships are also exclusively awarded to students who have demonstrated excellence in the India version of this leadership program, the International Award for Young People.

How We Developed Our Vision


Starfish Scholarships is built upon the conviction that small acts of generosity can go a long way when it comes to building a better tomorrow.


The organization gets its name from "The Starfish Story," originally written by Loren Eisley.

The Starfish Story

One day a man was walking along the beach when he noticed a boy picking something up and gently throwing it into the ocean.

Approaching the boy, he asked, "What are you doing?"

The youth replied, "Throwing starfish back into the ocean. The surf is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them back, they'll die."

"Son," the man said, "don't you realize there are miles and miles of beach and hundreds of starfish? You can't make a difference!"

After listening politely, the boy bent down, picked up another starfish and threw it back into the surf. Then, smiling at the man, he said..."I made a difference to that one."



Rosalyn Yake


Anne Kneale


Helen Kneale


Stephanie Silliker


Rahul Shankar


Caitlyn Hui


Cindy Ma

Help us give more deserving students scholarships!