About Our Auction
To honor and remember Janessa, the Foundation for Central Schools adopted the Janessa Ramirez Scholarship Program. In April of 2016 the first annual Janessa Ramirez Scholarship Awards took place, and six outstanding Central Unified Seniors were each awarded a $2500 scholarship. Since then, the Foundation for Central Schools has grown the program to keep Janessas’ story alive and educate the importance of gang prevention. In 2020, the Foundation announced the award of an additional $2500 scholarship. Which increased the total to seven scholarships.In spring of 2021, the first Janessa Ramirez mural was commissioned by muralist Samantha Lazcano. The mural represents Janessa’s story. It is our hope the mural will bring awareness to gang violence in the Central Community and surrounding areas. The mural is located at Granville Teague Community Resource Center and will stay for the next 4 years.
Today, the scholarship program is thriving and adapting to keep Janessa’s memory alive through the power of education and community outreach. This year, the Foundation for Central Schools Board of Directors approved to increase the program to ten (10) $2500 scholarships.
About Foundation for Central Schools
In 2015, Janessa Ramirez was standing in front of a laundromat with her mother when she was killed in the crossfire of a gang dispute. She was struck by a stray round fired from several hundred yards away and died on January 18, 2015. She was a 4th grader from Steinbeck Elementary in Central Unified School District. Later that year, during the 2015 State of the City address, Mayor Ashley Swearengin presented Stacey Gonzales with a Key to the City and announced Central’s new scholarship program in her daughter’s name.
To honor and remember Janessa, the Foundation for Central Schools adopted the Janessa Ramirez Scholarship Program. To date, the Foundation as awarded $60,000 in scholarships to deserving Central Unified seniors. In 2020, the Foundation announced the award of seven $2500 scholarships in the spring of 2021. Today, the program is thriving and adapting to keep Janessa's memory alive through the power of education.
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