October 31, 2012

For more information, media only, contact: Michele Talwani – 603-641-9441 ext. 239
For more information, general questions, contact: Kyle Beaulieu – 603-641-9441 ext. 259

Photo – Scholarship Award Presentation: New Hampshire Governor John Lynch (right) presented this year’s New Hampshire Coalition to End Homelessness “Hope Starts Here” scholarship award to Kayloni Pearson (left), a junior at the University of New Hampshire, at the New Hampshire Homeless Providers and Education Liaisons Partnership Conference on October 22, 2012.


Recipient Attending the University of New Hampshire

MANCHESTER, NH – The NH Coalition to End Homelessness (NHCEH) has awarded Kayloni Pearson, a junior at the University of New Hampshire (UNH), the fourth annual Hope Starts Here Scholarship.  The scholarship is dedicated for homeless or formerly homeless New Hampshire students.  Recently, Kayloni was recognized as this year’s recipient at the 2012 NH Homeless Providers and Homeless Education Liaisons Partnership Conference.  Governor John Lynch presented Kayloni with the award.

Kayloni’s experience with homelessness began during her senior year of high school, when she was informed that her family was going to be evicted from their residence.  At the time, her mother had considered moving to Massachusetts.  Determined to prevent relocation to another school, something Kayloni was familiar with, she reached out to her peers in search of a place to stay.  Fortunately, Kayloni was able to live with one of her friends, which allowed her to complete her senior year.  Since then, Kayloni had been living on and off with friends and family, until she was able to obtain her own apartment.

As a social work major in her junior year of college, Kayloni is an avid volunteer and supports her community in a variety of ways, such as spending time as a family advocate at the Strafford Country Jail, working as a peer advisor at her school, and volunteering at Aspiring Hands, a UNH organization that brings student volunteers to help children at local after school programs.

“From homelessness to higher education, Kayloni’s commitment to personal success has never wavered, despite the significant challenges that she faced,” said Cathy Kuhn, PhD, Director of the NH Coalition to End Homelessness.  “We feel fortunate to have an opportunity to recognize her achievements and to play a small part in helping her to realize her goals.”

“[I]f you’re homeless and you don’t know where you’re going to sleep the next night or where your next meal is going to come from, it’s very difficult to take advantage of the opportunity to get a good education,” said Governor Lynch, speaking at the conference.  “To be able to [attain higher education] and do it coming out of an environment when you’re homeless is quite extraordinary…”

Kayloni is on track to graduate in the spring of 2014.


The NH Coalition to End Homelessness (NHCEH) Scholarship can be used to help defray the costs of college or post-secondary vocational training program tuition, fees, books, prep courses, or other educational expenses.  This year’s award will be the fourth provided by the NHCEH Scholarship.  The scholarship will be awarded on October 22 at the 2012 NH Homeless Providers and Homeless Education Liaisons Partnership Conference.  Only one scholarship is being awarded for the 2012 cycle.  For more information on the scholarship, please visit


Donations for the scholarship fund have been largely provided by Goffstown High School’s National Honor Society, with additional donations being provided by New Hampshire Department of Education employees, Rochester School District, South Congregational Church of Concord, and private donors.

Donations for the scholarship can be made online at, by contacting the NHCEH at [email protected] or by calling 603-641-9441 extension 251.

The NH Coalition to End Homelessness, a division of Families in Transition, is a nonprofit organization with the purpose of eliminating the causes of homelessness through advocacy, education and community organizing. For more information about the NHCEH, or the scholarship fund, visit or call 603-641-9441.