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Early Childhood Developmental Trauma Legacy Scholarship

Funded by
1 winner$1,000
Application Deadline
May 5, 2024
Winners Announced
Jun 5, 2024
Education Level
Recent scholarship winners
Eligibility Requirements
Education Level:
Undergraduate student
Field of Study:
Social work, psychology, or child development

Many children suffer abuse and neglect and are traumatized in early childhood development. 

Children often don’t have an advocate, especially when they’re being abused by their parents or guardians. As a result, many children slip through the cracks, often suffering long-term consequences due to the trauma they face in their tender years.

This scholarship seeks to increase awareness of the severity of trauma on young children by supporting students who will work to combat these issues in their careers.

Any undergraduate student who is pursuing a career in social work, psychology, or child development may apply for this scholarship.

To apply, tell us about the consequences of early childhood development trauma, how you plan to fight this issue through your career field, and any personal experience you have related to this issue.

Selection Criteria:
Ambition, Drive, Impact
Published November 27, 2023
Essay Topic

What are the consequences of early childhood development trauma and how do you plan to use your chosen career field to help combat this issue? Additionally, if you have a personal experience that is related to this issue, feel free to tell us your story.

400–600 words

Winning Application

Josiah Yarbrough
Liberty UniversitySIOUX FALLS, SD
In my personal experience, early childhood development trauma has lasting consequences, well into adulthood. That trauma affects how you see the world, how you see people and how you see yourself. I was abused sexually, physically, verbally, mentally and emotionally from a very young age, by people I was supposed to love and trust because they were supposed to love me. I was a quiet child. I did not make friends easily. I was teased and bullied. People who could see my vulnerability took advantage of it. In my teen years, I was suicidal. I felt unloved, worthless and that no one would miss me. I felt alone. Nothing I did would ever be enough. I was ugly, disgusting and unlovable. I felt that maybe I deserve all of this. In my late teens and early twenties, I struggled with self-mutilation, depression, borderline-personality disorder and post-traumatic stress syndrome. As I got older, I was able to heal in many areas because of my faith in God, but to this day I can still see the effects of childhood trauma in my life today. It is still hard to let people touch me, to let people really know me. It is hard to trust people. As a man, it is difficult to find people who are willing to listen to my problems. I do not receive the support or compassion that one would hope for if they were in my shoes. Early childhood development trauma robs children of their innocence and of their childhood. It causes children to face things that they mentally and emotionally are incapable of handling. Due to this fact, traumatized children grow up with a plethora of issues be it mental, emotional, behavioral, social or a combination of these. I want a career in the field of counseling or psychology, focusing on children and adolescents, hopefully working with children in the foster care system and possibly fostering or adopting children myself. I will use this career field to combat the issue of early childhood development trauma by being a safe adult for children to talk to, after establishing trust by allowing them to talk when they are ready. The more therapists tried forcing conversations out of me, the more I retreated inside of myself. In my career, I will develop a trusting relationship with each child, where they feel comfortable and safe to open up, in their own timing. I will work with children to overcome feelings of guilt and shame. I will help children learn positive self-talk to help they grow in confidence, self-esteem and self-worth. I will help children find healthy ways to handle their emotions and develop healthy social practices. Most importantly, I will help children believe that they are loved and worthy of love. Finally, in my career, I will help parents and guardians understand what children with early childhood development trauma struggle with and teach them positive and productive ways to help the children in their care. My dream is to help children get healing, freedom, peace and joy. I want them to not only give and receive love, but to truly feel loved and lovable. I want to give traumatized children a fighting chance in the world and the tools they need to live life abundantly.


When is the scholarship application deadline?

The application deadline is May 5, 2024. Winners will be announced on Jun 5, 2024.

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