Christmas seems to evoke more generosity than any other time of year.
Last Saturday marked the sixth year for the Love Day project, conceived by Terry Mexican Arthur, where volunteers busily gathered to prepare and wrap donations of food, clothing, books and other tokens for the lonely elderly and the disadvantaged under tents in Queen’s Park.
The project also partnered with the Barbados Homeless And Vagrants Society to lend assistance.
Based on a simple wish to reach out and spread cheer, Mexican, a former Square One band member, called on a few of his friends to buy gifts and to assist with wrapping and delivering. The veteran entertainer has been ably assisted each year by celebrity friends like Alison Hinds, Biggie Irie, Anderson Blood Armstrong, and others who just want to help.
All of the parishes are visited by different groups targeting children, elderly, vulnerable single parent-led homes and the less fortunate. Arthur is contacted about those in need, and he puts out calls utilizing mainly Facebook.
What has the response been like?
“Very good. It’s been increasing every year since 2010. Over the last three years, we’ve attracted some corporate sponsorship,” remarks Arthur. “I feel people want to help, but they don’t know how. The project gives them the avenue to do just that.”
Love Day has grown, and now attracts large groups that visit the Lucky Horseshoe bandhouse to wrap presents ahead of the main Love Day delivery day.
“Even people from overseas send barrels,” marvelled Terry.
Love Day also goes beyond Christmas. Should a fire victim require immediate assistance, there would be items on hand that could be offered.
The other major thrust is slated for Easter when more than 500 kites will be given to children.
“I would love people letting us know about anyone that really needs help,” says Arthur. “Donations for Love Day ideally should come as early as possible between October and November.”
For more information, or to contact Love Day, identifying those in need, telephone (246) 241-9210 or 435-7701; or email email@example.com. You may also visit www.facebook.com/thelovedayproject.