Southwestern Advantage Foundation’s mission is to contribute to young people’s entrepreneurship education and experience in the countries where Southwestern Advantage student program takes place. Our second charitable project in 2020 was to support one ambitious young athlete like Greete Poderat was. Greete passed away tragically in 2019, on May 18 2020 she would have got 24 years old.
The idea of our annual scholarship is to encourage and support youth sport and career options in competitive sports. That’s why we support one young athlete with 1000 euros. Southwestern Advantage Foundation also wants to help young people’s financial awareness so in addition to monetary support our founder and investor Jaak Roosaare offers the winner his mentorship on finances.
Total 27 scholarship applications were received, out of which it was hard to pick the winner because there were a lot of good candidates. The applicants needed to send a motivational letter, a support letter from their coach, a report card from school, and a list of competitive achievements and recent training camps. The winner was selected by a jury whose members were Greete’s mom Juta, brother Paul and close friends.
The winner was Mari Linnus, a young orienteer from Setomaa, who is studying in Audentes Sports Gymnasium.
Mari has been the best in ski- and mountain bike orienteering for years, in addition to that she was won a lot of medals in the regular orienteering races. In 2019 she won 4th place in Junior World Championships in MTB orienteering. Mari’s dream is to become the world champion and in the long run the best MTB orienteer in the world. 2020 World Championship was set to take place on October 2-8 in Portugal.
Mountain bike orienteering is a technical sport that in addition to physical and mental readiness also needs a competitive technical side – a good mountain bike. In 2020, Mari competes in the junior class and she has grown out of her competition bike. Mari wants to direct the scholarship funds to buy a new bicycle that is suitable for her growth, is lighter, and has good shock absorbers in addition to other components. According to Mari this will improve the mobility of the bike in the mountains and will significantly simplify map reading during title competitions.
Mari’s coach Kenny Kivikas describes her as follows: “As an athlete, Mari can be described as goal-oriented, combative and always ready to strive until the end, which is exactly what she needs when achieving high results. At the same time, she is by no means arrogant and never underestimates her opponents. In terms of daily training as a coach, I need to hold her back a bit so the progress is steady and she’s not overworking, so she can perform when needed. Her inner drive to become better and striving for results no matter how hard things get are definitely the main reasons why she has been already successful.
… In addition to sports Mari has left the impression of an extremely sympathetic and nice young person in her other activities. She has great results in school and at the same time, she also sings, dances, and attends various events to introduce the Seto culture. There are very few young people who can combine so many different activities. Obviously, all these activities also require good time planning, keeping your promises, and a sense of responsibility.”
Congratulations, wishing you well and good luck at the World Championships!
“Wake up with determination, go to sleep with satisfaction”
Greete Poderat (18.05.1996-forever)
Southwestern Advantage Foundation’s mission is to be the biggest charitable foundation in Eastern Europe that is built on investment principles and helping young people in obtaining knowledge and developing character so they can fulfill their dreams in life. We help European youth get better entrepreneurship education and offer investment knowledge to those who do not have the opportunity. We are working to reduce and prevent poverty.
We only donate money from the fund’s passive income by directing 50% of the return to charity and 50% back to the fund. That is how your good deed will remain giving forever.