Elevating African Excellence through Outreach, Mentorship and scholarships in STEM & Nursing for a brighter tomorrow 

Our Mission

Breaking Barriers Foundation aims to empower and uplift African individuals in Washington by providing equitable access to quality STEM and Nursing education. Through outreach, mentorship programs, and scholarships, we aim to foster a supportive environment that promotes innovation, inclusivity, and academic excellence.

Become a mentor 

Join Us in Empowering the Next Generation

Together, we can inspire and empower the next generation of STEM and Nursing leaders. Join us as a mentor and be part of a community dedicated to excellence, innovation, and inclusivity in education.

Ready to make a difference? Fill out our mentorship application form to get started on your mentoring journey 

Students

Join the IMPCT Scholar Program: Unlock Your Potential in STEM and Nursing 

Are you a passionate student eager to succeed in STEM or Nursing? Join our IMPCT Scholar Program and start a transformative journey towards academic excellence, mentorship, and career opportunities.

Sign up today to access scholarships, mentorship, and community support. Unlock your potential and achieve your dreams with us!

Donate

Catalyze Change, Transform Lives

Breaking Barriers Foundation is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Your contributions, whether large or small, are instrumental in advancing our mission of empowering first-generation immigrant African individuals in Washington. We also welcome funding collaborations to support specific communities of students. Contact us for more information.

Thank you for considering the Breaking Barriers Foundation as your partner in philanthropy. 

Founders

Brenda Obonyo

Brenda Obonyo's journey from Kenya to America in 2017 ignited her passion for empowering her community through education. Despite initial challenges accessing resources, Brenda excelled academically at Edmonds College and the University of Washington, graduating with a degree in Informatics in 2022.

Throughout her academic journey, Brenda noticed the lack of representation for Black students in STEM fields. Determined to bridge this gap, she dedicated herself to advocating for underrepresented students and providing mentorship opportunities.

As a leader in both academic and community spaces, Brenda served as the Student Body President at Edmonds College and as the Informatics Senator at the University of Washington. Her advocacy and service have been recognized with numerous awards, including the 2022 Eisenberg Award and the University of Washington Information School's Social Impact & Justice Award.

Brenda's commitment to education, mentorship, and advocacy continues to inspire positive change, leaving a lasting impact on her community and beyond.


Violet Gleny Parks

Violet Gleny Parks started her academic journey in the United States in 2019 at Everett Community College (EVCC). She graduated with honors from the STEM program in 2023. Now, she is studying for a bachelor's degree in Biology at the University of Washington Seattle.

While at EVCC, Violet took on many leadership roles. She was the President of the African Diaspora club, the Treasurer of the Black Student Union, and helped start the student parent club. She also worked as a peer navigator for the African/African American cohort in the Diversity and Equity department. Seeing the lack of African/African American individuals in STEM fields, Violet wanted to make a difference.

To help bridge this gap, Violet joined the SHPEP (Summer Health Professions Education Program) at the University of Washington in 2022 and the BSCP (Biomedical Science Careers Program) at Harvard University in 2023.

Violet is dedicated to making STEM more inclusive. She focuses on mentorship and advocacy to inspire new leaders who will create lasting change in their communities.