The Red Foundation and the Coalition for the Barbados Association of Central Florida are continuing efforts to assist the St Mark’s Primary School, this time giving ten students backpacks filled with stationery and promising continued assistance.
The presentation was made at the Blades Hill, St Philip school last Friday by the members of the Foundation – patron and Cultural Ambassador Stedson Red Plastic Bag Wiltshire, chairman Alvin Jemmott, deputy chairman Henderson Griffith, and treasurer Kim Deane.
Wiltshire, who said the foundation’s aim was to support the school as much as it could, thanked all the organisations in the diaspora that have assisted, particularly the Coalition for the Barbados Association of Central Florida, Robinson Smiles, and Transit Workers and Friends of New York.
“Our connection with the diaspora is important, and when we speak of the diaspora we speak of the people who are Barbadians that live in other countries in the world. They want to help you. They want to contribute to your development because they see themselves as Barbadians, just like you, and want to see you develop,” he told the students.
Wiltshire assured that as long as he was the foundation’s patron, there would always be a connection to the school. He encouraged the students to be proud of their institution’s rich history, which he said included producing many outstanding Barbadians.
“You too can grow to become outstanding Barbadians, once you focus on your school work and remain as disciplined as possible. We will try our best to give you the support that you need to continue to press on. We are here for you,” he said.
Last year, the Red Foundation provided a paved walkway for students and staff to get from one area of the school to another when it rained, Jemmott reminded. And he said the donation of the bags and supplies was a continuation of the foundation’s commitment “to help our community”.
“We know that today there are many young people at risk in our society and some get involved in negative behaviour; some get involved in things that cause them to be in trouble. We do not want that for you. One of the reasons that our young people get into trouble is because they are oftentimes not given the assistance that they may need or the helping hand to get beyond any hurdle. Today’s donation is part and parcel of us saying we are here to help,” the chairman said.
Dale Husbands, president of the Orlando-based Coalition for the Barbados Association of Central Florida, said that after a conversation with Wiltshire who performs at their annual Independence Gala, they “fell in love” with the concept of the Red Foundation and some of its goals and decided to become an active partner.
Apart from the donation of supplies, the association gave cash at the Foundation’s launch, and Husbands said that “each year from now on, we will hope to continue supporting the ventures that they have”.
The Red Foundation is a charitable organisation focused on building strong communities and helping people in those communities. Its mission is to mobilise people to work together to alleviate poverty, help the needy, and elevate society through community empowerment. (PR)