Lending a hand
One school has been making provisions to assist students whose parents will be included in the hundreds of public sector workers being sent home.
Jeff Broomes, principal of the Parkinson Memorial School, told Barbados TODAY that as school reopened for the beginning of the 2013-2014 school year, the initiative was launched to ensure that none of its students were dislocated as a result of their parent or guardian being placed on the breadline due to Barbados’ struggling economy.
“We are identifying the names of all of our children whose mother or father got laid off and we will be meeting with the parents and arranging some fund-raising activity to help support them during this time of need.
“If we have children here in school and their parents have lost their jobs then the children will suffer, and we have to give them whatever support that we can. We already have a lunch programme at the school; so the children will be provided with lunch. We already have a breakfast programme at the school; so they will be provided with breakfast,” he said.
Additionally, in light of the flooding and landslides caused by heavy rains in St Vincent, Broomes indicated that the school was organizing a fund-raising venture for a school in that country which Parkinson hosted during its recently held drama festival.
While there was no physical damages to the school, Broomes said many of its students had lost their homes.
Parkinson also launched a programme where through the arts, students are being encouraged to pay tribute to the African statesman Nelson Mandela and those who place first, second and third will be awarded for their outstanding entries.
As the school plans a Barrow [And] Mandela Lecture series, five people from within the Barbadian community, Prime Minister Freundel Stuart included, have been contacted to come to the school and deliver lectures on the two great men.