Hundreds of people from all walks of life and from as far away as Germany and Canada converged on the grounds of the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus on Sunday afternoon to ensure that for a few more students, money would not be an obstacle to education.
The campus’ guild lawn was a sea of blue as students, staff, friends, family and members of corporate Barbados warmed up before hitting the road for the third annual Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) Race for Kids.
Managing Director for RBC’s Barbados operations Robert De Silva revealed that in just two years, the race had raised over $183,000 and provided nearly two dozen scholarships for university students.
“I am excited to see so many of you in RBC Race for Kids t-shirts. Thanks to you, this event has been growing in strength and success since we first launched the race in Barbados in 2017,” De Silva told participants.
“Over our first two years, the RBC Race for the Kids has raised just over $183,000 in support of the UWI Cave Hill Campus’ first year peer programme mentors and we were able to fund 21 scholarships to date.
“Our sincere thanks to all our RBC and UWI employees, students, volunteers, first-year programme peer mentors, family and friends, runners and walkers from Barbados, Germany, the USA and elsewhere who are joining RBC at the starting line.”
Over the past three years, more corporate sponsors have been showing interest in the worthy cause, placing the initiative in a better position to eclipse its previous targets.
“RBC has a long legacy of supporting a wide range of children and youth causes. Supporting our youth is deeply entrenched in our corporate culture; it is who we are. We want to make a difference, we want children in Barbados, regardless of circumstances, to be successful in their studies and develop skills that will help them in their personal growth, wellness and achievements.
“We all have a role to play in creating a sustainable future for Barbados’ youth. It is an important shared responsibility as a society and is why initiatives like today’s race are so important. It is one of the many ways that we bring to life RBC’s purpose to help communities prosper,” De Silva concluded.
Meanwhile, Principal and Vice Chancellor of the University Dr Eudine Barriteau indicated that while corporate sponsorship was extremely important, the general support of the public remained critical.
“There are individuals and friends and associations who have joined us for the first time and I want to say to them thank you,” she said. (KS)