GIS:-The Non-Profit SLBWA makes an Impassioned Plea for Support as Traditional Sources of Funding Dwindle.
The Dame Pearlette Louisy Legacy Committee made a special donation to the Saint Lucia Blind Welfare Association (SLBWA) earlier this week, at a brief ceremony held at Government House.
The Oct. 4 donation will be used to assist with the operational expenses of the struggling institution.
At the ceremony, Governor General Her Excellency Dame Pearlette Louisy, Patron of the SLBWA, presented the association with an EC$3500 cheque on behalf of the Dame Pearlette Louisy Legacy Committee, and the Office of the Governor General. The monies are proceeds from a special collection made during an ecumenical service on Sep. 15, in honor of the 20th anniversary of HE Dame Pearlette Louisy as Governor General.
Monsignor Hon. Dr. Patrick Anthony, a member within the Dame Pearlette Legacy Committee, commented on the SLBWA’s need for resources.
“It is beautiful that the Legacy Committee with the Governor General’s Office can lead off in giving to the SLBWA that is in much need of resources at the moment. This nation must understand that there are institutions that contribute to national development, and they are not business making, there is no business of raising funds for themselves, or making a profit because they’re in the business of national service. And the country must support those institutions.
“We hope that our efforts will be part of stimulating this response to the SLBWA and other associations in this country that need help.”
Executive Director of the Saint Lucia Blind Welfare Association, Anthony Avril, expressed immense gratitude to the benefactors, adding that the SLBWA had a special regard for the Governor General whose friendship with the association predates her appointment as Governor General.
Mr. Avril also thanked the many organizations and individuals who have come to their aid.
“Ladies and gentlemen, the SLBWA has contributed to the national good since the 70s and 80s when we told the nations that blindness and visual impairment was a significant concern. In delivering our services, we do not refuse those who can’t afford. This organization which has been contributing to the nation, now deserves your support. I don’t know any other way I can put this. Any little bit that one can contribute will help. There is no Saint Lucian man or woman who will not be able to make a contribution.”
The Governor General has called on other entities both in the public and private sector to recognize the importance of the SLBWA to society, and to extend a helping hand.
“It’s really an impassioned plea and we really need to take it seriously. As Mr. Avril has pointed out, in days gone by we had generous benefactors, and we never stopped to ask ourselves where these resources were coming from. The services were there, the help was there, we didn’t ask any questions. We received with gratitude, and we moved on with our lives. But these are changing times, these are challenging times, and we need to start doing things for ourselves,” she said.
Dame Pearlette added that Saint Lucians must now take collective and personal responsibility for their country.