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Posted: Wednesday 15 February, 2012 at 6:34 AM

Project Strong shows love for the elderly

Kenesha James and Omar Dindial presenting Ismay "Mama Maize" Sweeney with basket
By: Jenise Ferlance, SKNVibes

    BASSETERRE, St. Kitts - TWO elderly persons were today (Feb. 14), greeted by students attending the learning institution, Project Strong, with baskets of love on what is considered one of the most special days of the year - Valentine's Day.


    On Valentine’s Day Kenesha James and Omar Dindial along with educator Myrtle Mills Wyre, visited the homes of 100 year old Ismay "Mama Maize" Sweeney of Newtown and 97 year old Charles Liburd of East Park Range.

    The students presented the elders with baskets not filled with teddy bears and chocolates but rather, household items that are needed for everyday use.


    Both Sweeney and Liburd received one basket containing toilet tissue, toothbrush and toothbrush holder, toothpaste, bath soap, washcloth, corn meal, rice, flour, sugar, canned milk, sardines, and of course - love!


    Sweeney, said a hearty "thank you" while accepting the gift, noting that what the students did was magnificent.


    "This is a wonderful thing that you guys are doing. You all should continue to do the job you are doing and God will continue to bless you. I do not know you guys but you still took the time out to come visit me and bring this basket for me. May the Lord keep you all under his love," said the centenarian.


    The group then traveled to East Park Range where Liburd also thanked the students for their generous donation.


    "Thank you all very much for visiting me and bringing this gift to me. This is a God bless," the nonagenarian said.


    The presentations made by the Project Strong students were in commemoration of History and Heritage Week as well as Valentine's Day, all in an effort to encourage communication between youths and elders in the community.

    The contents of the baskets were provided by the Sisters of St. Kitts, an ad hoc charity group based in Pennsylvania USA, through their local representative Myrtle Mills Wyre.


    Wyre has been teaching Money Management as well as Business Development at Project Strong from January to April of each year for the past three years.


    She said that the donation is also in collaboration with the Department of Community Services and that this is the first donation of its kind… and hopes that it would be continued.


    "The Sisters of St. Kitts wanted a way of giving back to the community so once they heard that I was teaching there, they donated the items and decided that they should go to the elders in our community. This is also in collaboration with the Department of Community Services. We would like to make it ongoing but as circumstances dictate, we cannot say if it would be, so we would just do it when we can," Wyre said.


    In addition to the baskets presentations, the Project Strong students took the opportunity to present their educators with a special Valentine's lunch prepared by the students themselves.






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