In July, we presented 15-year-old Beth Reid with a Variety Gold Heart Scholarship. These scholarships help talented Kiwi kids, who already excel in the arts, sport or education, to reach their full potential and overcome personal challenges.
Beth has a passion for softball and baseball, and has been recognised by national selectors from Softball New Zealand. She has even been selected to play in the Emerging White Sox development programme which aims to nurture young players to eventually reach their Olympic dreams.
Beth is extremely talented and is the youngest in her teams. While her mum is her biggest fan, Beth has grown up without a father, siblings, grandparents or any extended family or outside support.
Her mum is committed to funding as much of Beth's expenses as possible, but Beth now plays at a level where additional funding is necessary if she is to continue. Beth helps her mum walk and look after dogs and holds regular markets selling donated goods to support her mum's fundraising efforts.
We are delighted to share some updates from Beth on what she’s been able to achieve with her Variety Gold Heart Scholarship since July!
“I have lots of great news to share! I have been selected by Softball NZ to play against one of the Top 4 College Teams from the USA that is touring here in December – the Oregon Ducks. I am one of only 5 teenagers selected and am still the youngest by 2 years! I am so excited and grateful for the opportunity to play with and against so many well respected and high-profile players. It will be an amazing experience and I can’t wait!
“I have worked really hard to get myself up to the next level which has allowed me to be able to play every single game this season at Premier Level. I am the only junior to have this honour and it is truly humbling. I am loving every moment of playing at this level and especially because I am learning so much from everyone around me who also have a love of the game. Being surrounded by the right people really does matter!
“I have also just been selected to represent Auckland in u17 grade for Nationals in Dunedin, and in u19 grade for Nationals in Auckland, both in January 2018.
“I am also playing u16 Baseball with North Shore City and really enjoying it, especially still being the only girl on the team. So far, there is only one other girl playing within Auckland.
“I have been achieving really well at school and have just finished all six of my Year 11 exams. I feel confident at passing all of them and hopefully some of them with an excellence. I studied very hard for my exams which wasn’t made easy with all of my training…
“I am so grateful for Variety’s support and belief in me. My mum and I are closer than ever now. She is less stressed about paying my sport bills which is great because now she is coming to all my games to support me instead of worrying about how to pay for it all.
“I love her watching me play and that I can show her how my hard work is paying off. I am determined to achieve my goals and will keep striving towards my dreams. I hope that one day I can get a scholarship to USA or Japan so that I can become a successful softball player. I would also love to become a NZ Softball Coach or Mentor. I want to be a good role model on and off the field and to inspire young athletes to pursue their dreams and to do what they are passionate about.”