When tragedy strikes, there are many ways to cope, said Andreas Robinson, the cousin of Quintez Downey, whose life was cut short in 2020.
Celebrating Downey’s memory was one way to do that, so a Dartmouth-based social enterprise whose mission is to empower youth has launched a scholarship to honour his memory.
Robinson is the founder and president of Infinitus, which has launched the Quintez Downey Memorial Scholarship. The award will celebrate and support African Nova Scotian youth along their academic and professional journeys.
Twenty-year-old Downey’s life was cut short tragically in January of last year from a shooting. The student-athlete was born and raised in the historically Black community of North Preston.
According to his obituary, Downey was pursuing a bachelor of arts degree at Crandall University in Moncton where he also played basketball.
“He was a big dreamer, somebody who loves community and is very much so rooted in faith and family,” Robinson said. “And so he has set a lot of different standards, specifically in the Black community.”
Robinson said he started the scholarship after talking with the family about the idea. He collaborated with Trev clothing, which helped match them for a $500 scholarship.
“We initially thought this could help a couple of students, but when we announced it, we actually received some outpour from the community,” he said.
Robinson said his organization received some donations from people who knew Downey and from others who wanted to support African Nova Scotia youth in their learning.
“Now we have even more opportunity for more scholarships,” he said.
Infinitus is offering multiple scholarships of $500, with the application deadline being July 15.
To be eligible, the applicant must be an African Nova Scotian youth, be accepted to a postsecondary program, and demonstrate commitment in one or more of the following areas: community service work or volunteering, academics, sports, creative arts, or entrepreneurship.
Robinson said four to six people will be awarded with the scholarship in September.
More information on the scholarship can be found at liveinfinitus.com.