The Errol & Nita Barrow Educational Trust is on a fundraising drive to boost the scholarship programme ahead of the centenary year of the Right Excellent Errol Barrow, father of Independence.
As he launched the fundraising gala, trustee Professor Avinash Persaud appealed to Barbadians to donate to the trust, which has given as much as one million dollars to 150 postgraduate students over the past 28 years. He said it was important that its account remined topped up since education has become more costly
He told journalists at the Island Inn Hotel: “This has been a big dividing line between those who can afford it and who can’t.
“So our job as trustees is even more important than it was, and we need even more resources than we had before.
“When we first started off we were able to give grants of a couple thousand dollars. “But a couple thousand dollars goes nowhere today in education. “We end up giving grants between $10,000 and $20,000 today. And if you go from giving grants of $2 000 to $20 000, you could imagine you are using up all of your cash resources so we need to raise more money.”
Professor Persaud encouraged the public to attend the dinner on Saturday, January 8, at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre or donate money to the trust.
He said: “We are marking the 100th anniversary, the birth of Errol Walton Barrow. And we are hoping to put the trust in a position that it would last for another 100 years.
“It is a great Barbadian institution that is entirely voluntary run. Yet, it has lasted for 28 years and has been able through its own resources to give away one million dollars of education grants.”
Governor General Dame Sandra Mason is to be the patron of the gala, while Prime Minister Mia Mottley is set to deliver the featured address, said director of Premier Events Services, Jerry Ishmael.
An art exhibition is to be held during the reception, where attendees will have the opportunity to bid in a silent auction, Ishmael added. The exhibition, featuring the work of over 20 artists, is being curated by Artists Alliance Barbados headed by Oneka Small.
Ishmael told reporters: “Each attendee will receive two gifts: A full-colour, eight-page publication on the life of and a commemorative medallion featuring the Rt. Excellent Errol Walton Barrow. “The medallion will be a symbol of a most erudite Caribbean statesman, family man, chef, political leader and social revolutionary.”
Ishmael also announced a competition to design the medallion with a prize of $500. The details of the competition are to be announced at a later date, he said.
Historian Professor Sir Hilary Beckles is to make a presentation entitled The Legacy of the Skipper on the life and times of the first Prime Minister of Barbados.
David Barrow, son of the father of Independence, is down to deliver remarks at the gala.
The fundraiser is offering a six-course meal and entertainment by Notes to Note Jazz Trio. (AH)