About Us

Our Mission: To support single parents in attaining an education – opening the doors to a career that will enhance their families’ lives.

Our History

ASPIRE of Southwest Missouri was formerly established as the Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Jasper & Newton Counties (SPSF) in 2006. It started as an initiative of United Way of Southwest Missouri to help single parents in our community. It is now an independent, non-profit agency affiliated with ASPIRE (Assisting Single Parents in Realizing Education), a national organization of single parent scholarship programs based in Arkansas. The local organization was established and incorporated in October 2009.

Statistics in Jasper and Newton Counties have continually shown this area as having a higher percentage of single-parent families below the poverty level as compared to the national average. The majority of these families are headed by individuals with only a high school education.

One of the best weapons to combat poverty is through education. ASPIRE of Southwest Missouri provides incentive scholarships to single parents who desire to earn a post-secondary degree through a college, university or technical school program—enabling them to obtain well-paying, skilled employment.