UNC Student Who Founded Ghana Nonprofit Earns National Service Award

University of Northern Colorado junior Honors student Rachel Rose Jackson has been awarded a $2,500 scholarship as one of three winners among hundreds who applied for the 2011 Students In Service Awards, which recognize college students for their commitment in addressing social and environmental challenges.

Jackson will be honored for her work, establishing a nonprofit organization that serves women and children living on the streets in Ghana, at a national conference on service and civic engagement April 28 in San Diego.

In addition to the scholarship, the Students in Service Awards program will award the university a $2,500 grant to support civic engagement programs for students.

The three winners were chosen by a national selection committee of civic leaders and more than 714,000 online votes for projects up for the awards, sponsored by Washington Campus Compact and Inspireum. Stories, videos and photos of the winners are available at www.serviceawards.org

As a sophomore studying abroad in Ghana, Jackson co-founded the nonprofit organization Kayalei Association, which provides assistance to women and children living on the streets of Accra. To date, the association has helped educate more than 500 Ghanaian women and children, and more than 150 have received medical treatment that they wouldn't have otherwise. Many of the women have received vocational training that allowed them to leave their former lives working on the streets. Others have been provided housing in the underdeveloped country.

For more about Jackson, read her Spotlight.