Colleen Amos, the founder of the leading London empowerment charity for black boys, The Amos Bursary, has been awarded an OBE in the Queen’s birthday honours list today.
Colleen Amos OBE described the honour as ‘ a wonderful tribute’ to the charity which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. Colleen said;
“The Charity’s aim is to address the under representation in higher education and the professions, of young British men of African and Caribbean Descent, by providing mentoring and empowerment to ensure each student moves from potential to performance.
“ The Bursary currently supports 107 AB students, 47 alumni, over 50 Associates, with 250 mentors and 35 committed volunteers . In our 10 years of operation, 100% of our graduates have embarked on postgraduate study or are currently employed at leading organisations such as Google, Goldman Sachs, Atkins Global, Barings Global, JP Morgan, Linklaters LLP, The Home Office, The NHS, Unilever – among others. Some graduates have further embarked on entrepreneurial journeys, starting their own businesses. Currently over 50% of our students study at a Russell Group or Ivy League university; 70% of whom study at the top 10 universities in the UK according to 2019 rankings – mastering subjects from Architecture to Aerospace Engineering.
“We have worked with our sponsors, strategic partners, volunteers and supporters to deliver unique opportunities and leadership programmes for students, developing their social and commercial skills, and offering life changing experiences in Asia, the US and Africa.
One of its students said “The Amos Bursary is more than just a development programme to me. The Amos Bursary introduced me to like-minded, hard-working, intelligent black boys I will forever be extremely grateful to those that have helped me along my journey in any way possible, the main thing that anyone can learn from my story is that it does not matter where you start in life, you can still go places and do great things. The support and the environment we have at the Bursary breeds and nurtures talented leaders of the future.”
First to congratulate Colleen was her sister the charity’s patron, Valerie Baroness Amos. Who said;
“We launched The Amos Bursary following the death within days of each other of both our parents. Our parents, were both teachers, were committed to education, with our father Mike teaching such notable individuals such as Canon Andrew White (The Vicar of Baghdad). We wanted their legacy to live on and I’m delighted that the incredible work of the charity has now had the formal recognition it deserves.”
The Amos Bursary is sponsored by organisations such as Linklaters & Imperial College and celebrates its tenth anniversary with a fundraising dinner in London on 26thJune 2019
At the gala students will launch an ambitious fundraising programme to raise £1 million pounds for its programme over the next 10 years.
Celebrating her OBE Colleen stayed focused on the charity’s work saying
“I’m delighted to have received this. Ten years is a milestone for any organisation and as I look back over the years, I have a great sense of achievement for what my family, friends, volunteers and supporters have achieved; the bond we have created as a group of people with a shared vision and set of values for the future and the impact we have made on so many young lives. Every year 300-400 young men apply to the bursary and our ambition is to support every single young man, as we continue to challenge the current narrative of underperformance, underemployment and crime for our young men.