BASSETERRE, St. Kitts - IT was an evening of joy and reflections as several prominent residents of Sandy Point were awarded for their sterling contributions to the community and the Federation as a whole.
Among the awardees was the founder and CEO of SKNVibes and Open Interactive, Stachio Williams, who has been instrumental in providing online news platforms and adding to the national development of Information and Communication Technology in St. Kitts and Nevis.
At a glitzy ceremony recently held in the Ballroom of the St. Kitts Marriott Resort, the Sandy Point Benevolent Society (SPBS) had recognized Williams and five other individuals with various awards.
Williams was bestowed with the title of Distinguished Alumnus and the Leadership Award.
He was recognised for his contribution in training of interns from the Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College, the development of support he continues to give to his home community of Sandy Point and the support this media house gives to that community.
“His life, his triumphs, his pitfalls, his enduring success are all evidence that scholastic perseverance harvests success; a mantra Stachio inherited from SPHS/CEMSS,” one speaker at the ceremony noted of Williams.
Desiree Gumbs also received the Leadership Award for being a dedicated individual, who was described as “a trustworthy, dedicated and loyal individual to the development of herself and others”.
She has been very active in the community while serving on the SPBS Committee, editing and drafting press releases.
Bestowed with the Distinguished Community Service Award was Austin Duncan, while Carline Edwards was honoured with the Distinguished Alumna and Educator Award.
Angeline Revon was presented with the Community Service Award and the Leadership and Community Service Award was bestowed on Calvin Farier.
Addressing the gathering, Williams thanked the Committee for the recognition bestowed upon him, noting that its members are the ones who have been doing a wonderful job in uplifting the community and, by extension, the country.
He encouraged the SPBS Executives to continue to serve the community.
“I stand here as a proud Sandy Pointer humbled by this achievement. I want to encourage the Sandy Point Benevolent Society to continue to serve our community and continue to grow.”
Reminding those about his company’s mantra - Nation Building - Williams pointed out that it encapsulates the “rebranding and constant promotion” of SPBS and the Sandy Point community.
In his address, Deputy Prime Minister and Parliamentary Representative of Constituency Number Five, the Hon. Shawn Richards took a few words from his predecessor, Jacinth Henry-Martin, stating that “the Annual Awards Banquet brings us together again to reminisce and to regale each with schoolyard stories and the joys of life in Sandy Point”.
He told the gathering that the Ministry of Education is pleased with the contributions that the SPBS continues to make in the support of education, which “is exemplary”.
Earlier in the year, the SPBS had recognised a number of students from schools in the community with scholarships in varying amounts.
The Sandy Point Benevolent Society was established some two decades ago with a few alumni from the Sandy Point High School, now the Charles E. Mills Secondary School (CEMSS), who began exploring ways to give back.
They eventually found a sustainable idea that they coined “The Principal’s Award”, which they believed would always have meaning because it would truly reflect on the core desires of the principal.
Members of the Society claimed that implementation of the award was easy as the school at that time was governed by the legendary William Vincent Austin Hodge, who had a legacy of young no-nonsense principal and strong parental backing from Dieppe Bay to Sandy Point.
Mr. Clarke, as he was fondly known, was instrumental in making the few alumni form a robust partnership.
Since then, the group of past students of that school has made meaningful annual contributions in support of the students, staff and teachers of all schools in Sandy Point.
The primary annual support has been cash scholarship awards and science and computer equipment to the CEMSS.
As of 2012, SPBS expanded the cash scholarship to include the valedictorian from the Newton Ground and St. Paul’s Primary Schools, bringing the total to three primary schools valedictorian, attending the CEMSS. Each one receives a $300 scholarship.
In 2007, the Sandy Point Benevolent Society became a 501(c)3 non-profit US corporation and is registered in the State of New York with corporate mailing address at 231-10 Linden Blvd., Jamaica, NY 11411.