FirstCaribbean International Bank is teaming up with the National Conservation Commission and the Ministry of Environment and Drainage to undertake the beautification of historic Queen’s Park.
The $80,000 project is being conducted under the bank’s umbrella corporate social responsibility community outreach programme, which is managed by the FirstCaribbean International ComTrust Foundation.
Through the foundation, the bank is involved in hundreds of projects across the region, in the areas of young people and education, health and wellness, and communities
and the environment.
“The foundation has spearheaded several environmental projects across the region, most notably in the Portland Bight National Park in Jamaica, the restoration of the mangrove forests in Grenada, and the establishment of an iguana protection area in San Salvador in the Bahamas,” said Mark St Hill, the bank’s managing director of retail, business and international banking.
St Hill added that the building of the environmental awareness wall in Warrens, St Michael, undertaken in partnership with the Barbados Future Centre Trust, was the bank’s latest such project locally, and First Caribbean believed the beautification of Queen’s Park would fit neatly into the category of community involvement and environmental protection.
“Queen’s Park is such a vibrant meeting place, traversed by people from all walks of life in Barbados every day, and it has been the centre of so many of our social activities ranging from the National Exhibition and Christmas Morning In The Park to today’s Agrofest,” said St Hill, who is also a trustee of FirstCaribbean International ComTrust Foundation.
Minister of the Environment Dr Denis Lowe welcomed the project, noting it was a significant project, as Queen’s Park “embodies a certain portion of the Barbados historic landscape”. The project will include the setting up of 26 additional seats, seven bench tables, as well as the repainting of curb walls, the Queen’s Park gates, and the outer walls.
“The park must never be a sterile impersonal space. It must always be a space for friendships, and love, and discussions, and intellectual exercises to occur. And that is why I believe this is a most historic moment for the people and the Government of Barbados,” Lowe said.
FirstCaribbean’s managing director for Barbados, Donna Wellington, noted that the Queen’s Park project was part of the bank’s contribution to the nation’s 50th Independence Anniversary Celebrations.
“In addition to the Queen’s Park project which we are sharing with the whole of Barbados, we are working to sensitize both employees and customers to things Barbadian, as we commemorate the occasion,” Wellington added.