Close to 200 people participated in last Saturday’s Esso Help Us Help Walk, held to raise awareness for the Barbados Diabetes Foundation and Esso’s current campaign to collect funds for the organisation.
At 6:30 a.m. the large crowd gathered outside the Esso service station in Black Rock, and after brief comments by Esso Country Manager Cally Boyea, the crowd made its way over Cave Hill, Hinds Hill and through Warrens to the site of the soon to be completed Diabetes Centre.
With the Centre as a backdrop, Chairman of the Diabetes Foundation Dr. Oscar Jordan spoke on the importance of exercise to the well-being of Barbadians in general. He noted that Barbadians are afflicted by a number of lifestyle diseases like hypertension and diabetes, contributing factors to an alarming statistic of close to 200 amputations a year.
Jordan applauded the Esso dealers, staff, associates of the Diabetes Foundation and their families who participated adding, “What we have done today is literally take the first step.” He explained that the Diabetes Centre would work towards goals of prevention and treatment of Diabetes. “When you are referred here, you will benefit from good nursing education and good nutrition education.”
Jordan commended Esso’s co-operation in this venture to raise funds for the organization as key because it “expresses the relationship between private sector citizenship and the general public.”
Esso Help Us Help, which runs for 7 weeks, will donate 8c from every gallon of fuels sold at any Esso station during the campaign period. The programme is unique in that it takes a portion of fuels income and donates it on behalf of the customer. In the coming weeks frequent updates on the amount of funds raised will be released to the general public.
Additional pledges were made by radio broadcasters Carol Roberts, Gaynelle Marshall and young calypsonian Nikita. Their participation led to pledges of $500 each to the campaign, and Boyea expressed his gratitude at their commitment to help the cause.