All People’s College Corner Program Successfully Helps Teens Afford College

All People’s Community Center
2019-20 Mission & Ministry Grantee 

The NBA Mission & Ministry Grant program accepts applications annually in the autumn and awards funds for use in the following year. Mission & Ministry Grant recipients used their 2019-20 funds to improve the health and wellbeing of older adults, youth, and young adults. As the 2019-20 grant period comes to a close, we asked grantees to share a story from the past year of how their communities and organizations benefitted from their award.

In 2019, All People’s Community Center in Los Angeles, California set out to create a college scholarship program that would help high school students in their community afford a college education. They applied for an NBA Mission & Ministry Grant and were awarded $10,000 to aid in this new venture.

With this new funding and other funding sources, they created All People’s FamilySource College Corner. A program that was developed to help increase the graduation rates of low-income high school students and prepare them for college and a career. In this program, college advisors work closely with all youth, from first grade to high school seniors, making sure that everyone knows that “College is Possible” regardless of their socio-economic status.

In 2020, the program helped many students reach their high education dreams, including Gisselle Sarabia. Gisselle is a first-generation college student who lives in South Central Los Angeles with her parents and younger brother.

College has always been a top goal for Gisselle but because of her parent’s economic background she believed that she would not be able to attend the school of her choice and she would have to attend a community college first and then transfer.

Gisselle has always been an exceptional student and her GPA has shown that. She graduated from USC Hybrid High School with a 4.0 GPA and High Honors, and applied to several safety schools, but her top choice was Mount St. Mary’s College.

In order to help pay for her education, Gisselle applied to various scholarships including the “Toyota Making Life Easier” Scholarship. With the assistance of All People’s Community Center College Corner staff, she applied and became a recipient of this scholarship which offers $4,000 per year with the possibility of renewal for up to four years.  In addition to the Toyota scholarship, Gisselle was able to secure a second scholarship from another source. Due to her excellent academic record, the school was able to offer Gisselle a full academic scholarship for four years!

Gisselle is now a freshman at Mt. Saint Mary’s College working on her major in Biological Sciences with an emphasis on pre-health.

“I just wanted to say thank you so much to Susana Nieva and All Peoples,” Gisselle Sarabia said. “I couldn’t have won the scholarship without your help!”

All People’s Community Center is a comprehensive community center offering social and educational services to students and their families in Los Angeles, California. Their mission is to “provide social services and programs that empower individuals and promote community respect and self-determination for all.” In addition to their Mission and Ministry Grant, All People’s received a COVID-19 NBA Response Grant and is one of NBA’s Health and social service partners.

As the health and social services general ministry of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), the National Benevolent Association partners with congregations, regions, general ministries, and a variety of Disciples-related health and social service providers to create communities of compassion and care. Founded in 1887 by six women responding to the needs of the day and on their doorsteps, for more than 130 years the NBA has continued to serve “the least of these.” Learn more at