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Philomena Robertson runs the 2019 NYC Marathon to benefit Reach Within

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by Troy Clarke, Transitional Living Coordinator, Reach Within

On 3 November 2019, Philomena Robertson will run her fifth NYC Marathon, all of which have been in support of the work of Reach Within with vulnerable children and caregivers in her homeland, Grenada.

“It has been an honour to be associated with fundraising initiatives for the organisation as there is tremendous value in the work it does. Support me as I support Reach Within by donating to this noble cause. I am indeed grateful for your anticipated support.”

According to Robertson, from a personal perspective, “the 2019 NYC Marathon will represent a significant milestone. It will be her 20th-lifetime marathon, a journey of 524 miles on foot, relentlessly pounding the pavement in several states across the US, a few Caribbean islands and even the Great Wall in China. And that’s in addition to hundreds of other miles in training.”

Eight years ago, when she was motivated to run her first marathon, it was in support of Reach Within. As she prepares to embark on this, her 20th marathon, she finds it symbolic that it is again in support of Reach Within. “A marathon is by no means an easy feat but when you run in support of a charity like Reach Within, it provides greater impetus. It’s the single motivating factor you need when you’re building your weekly mileage in training. And on race day when fatigue begins to set in and the miles don’t seem to go by fast enough, knowing that each step you take, honours a commitment you have made to help vulnerable children, makes all the difference. So again, I humbly ask for your support for the children who benefit from the remarkable work of Reach Within; support them today!”

Reach Within in the principal programme of the Bartholomew J Lawson Foundation for Children, a 501(c)3 working to end the epidemic of child abuse and neglect by getting to the root of childhood trauma. By understanding how trauma changes the brain and affects behaviour, Reach Within supports positive outcomes for children and adolescents who have experienced adversity. Reach Within programmes focus on the repair of neural pathways in the brain through rhythmic activities, such as yoga, drumming, swimming and breathing practices. Trauma-informed trainings allow caregivers and mentors to better understand how trauma affects children through the life-cycle so they may help children and teens develop positive healthy attachments – a key factor for resiliency.

Trauma is repairable and Reach Within is doing something about it. 

Reach Within provides low-cost, high-impact outreach services to all residential care homes across the island of Grenada, a drop-in centre in the capital city, St George’s and a recently established centre for trauma-informed training in Mirabeau. Working alongside local government and key stakeholders in the region, Reach Within is uniquely positioned to offer its training model at both regional and international levels.

We invite you to join us in getting to the root of childhood trauma. Running a marathon takes grit – putting one foot in front of the other and moving towards that 26.2-mile goal, but it is also the support of those around the runner that creates such a life-changing experience!

Join us.  Run with us.  Be inspired by us.  Create positive change.  

To further support Philomena in her endeavours you can check out her Crowdrise page at:

https://www.crowdrise.com/o/en/campaign/2019-tcs-nyc-marathon-team/philomenarobertson

Thank you to each and every one of you.

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Caribbean & World

Co-op Bank and Grenada Nurses Association commence new relationship

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On 5 December 2019, Grenada Co-operative Bank Limited and the Grenada Nurses Association Inc. (GNA Inc.) forged a new business relationship.

At a ceremony held at the bank’s head office on Thursday, 5 December 2019, the two organisations signed a Memorandum of Understanding that offers preferred terms and conditions to members of the GNA Inc. and their spouses when seeking credit facilities from Co-op Bank.

Signing on behalf of Co-op Bank was the bank’s Chief Operating Officer, Deon Moses, while President of the GNA Inc., Nurse Patricia Strachan, executed on behalf of the nurses.

Nurse Strachan stated that this agreement is first of its kind for the association and described the occasion as a “great moment”, especially as there are limited opportunities existing for nurses. She believes this will enable members to become more empowered to advance and invest in their development once this opportunity is tapped into.

Moses reaffirmed Co-op Bank’s commitment to help build our local economy and people, and sees this relationship as another way it is manifested. He also pointed to the bank’s mission statement which highlights the bank’s commitment to contributing to the wellbeing of citizens where it operates.

Both organisations hope this relationship will be long-lasting and be mutually beneficial.

Co-op Bank

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Cuban nurses to temporarily fill vacancies

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by Linda Straker

  • 30 to 40 nurses from Cuba will be contracted to help fill vacancies within healthcare systems
  • 50 persons will undergo nursing assistants training through National Training Agency

In early 2020 Grenada will be contracting between 30 to 40 nurses from Cuba as a temporary measure to help fill vacancies within the healthcare systems as part of a short-term measure adopted by health administrators aimed at reducing the impact of nurses who are leaving the system and taking up jobs in places like the United Kingdom.

Health Minister Nikolas Steele said government is finalising arrangements for the nurses following the visit of a delegation to Grenada a few weeks ago. “This is a stop-gap measure,” he said, admitting that over the years nurses with experience are leaving the system. “Unfortunately, we are losing our nurses to first world countries,” he said. He did not share the number of nurses who have left the system in most recent times.

Besides Cuba, Steele said that Grenada is also looking to import nurses from Ghana and India. The final agreement will include housing for the nursing professionals.

While the government will be importing the qualified registered nurses and those of high-level qualification, Steele said that 50 persons are desirous of becoming nursing assistants while undergoing a one-year training through one of the certified national training centres of the National Training Agency (NTA).

“We are still on schedule for a January start of our nursing assistants programme. We are in final negotiations with La Boucan and the national training authority of Grenada as well as our Ministry of Youth and Education to finalise the training of 50 nursing assistants, in two batches of 25,” the minister said.

The curriculum is expected to meet the criteria of the Nursing Council, the National Training Agency and the Ministry of Health. The training will involve both theory and practical.

La Boucan Creative Centre is owned and operated by former Health Minister Ann Peters, and her husband Francis Urias Peters. As a recognised national training centre, its programme will be accredited by the National Accreditation Board.

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China proving EC$34.8 million in aid to Grenada

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by Linda Straker

  • EC$38.4 million in aid will fund Cricket Stadium renovation and other projects
  • Over 1,800 Grenadians have attended training courses in China
  • Chinese government has implemented several China-Aid framework projects

China is to provide EC$38.4 million in aid to the Government Grenada which will see the funding used for the Cricket Stadium renovation and other projects.

On 9 December, Dr Zhao Yongchen, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the People’s Republic of China to Grenada and Hon. Peter David, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Labour of Grenada signed the Agreement on Economic and Technical Cooperation between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of Grenada.

According to the agreement, the Chinese government will provide a grant fund of 100 million Chinese RMB yuan (EC$38.4 million) to the Grenadian government to implement the Cricket Stadium Renovation Project and other projects.

Ambassador Zhao Yongchen said that under China-Aid framework, the Chinese government has implemented many projects for Grenada such as Low-Income Housing Project, Rebuilding of Grenada National Cricket Stadium and Athletic Stadium, and Technical Cooperation on Agriculture.

A statement from the Chinese Embassy in Grenada said that since 2005 more than 200 Grenadian students have studied in China sponsored by the Chinese government and over 1,800 Grenadians have attended seminars or short-term training courses in China.

The Chinese hospital ship Peace Ark visited Grenada twice, providing free medical service to the Grenadian people. The Chinese government also donated police vehicles and medical equipment to the Grenadian government.

“All these projects are funded by the Chinese government grant assistance. He hopes the signing of the agreement will further enhance the bilateral cooperation under the Belt and Road initiative and promote the social and economic development of Grenada,” the statement said.

Minister David, on behalf of the Grenadian government, expressed his sincere appreciation to the Chinese government and people for the generous assistance. He acknowledged the support from the Chinese government to Grenada in infrastructure, education, sports and many other areas and said that Grenada is willing to deepen the cooperation with China under the Belt and Road initiative.

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