LETTER: Kudos to the parents for the students studying in Cuba

Cuban Flag

Dear Editor,

The parents for the students studying in Cuba have once again accomplished another feat …

For the second time they have all come together and shipped off to Cuba, a container with barrels of food supplies & toiletries to their children.

Last year, the parents organized 80 barrels with food staples & personal hygiene products and had them shipped to Cuba to assist in relieving the students of their economic hardships & challenges that they were facing, especially during the pandemic.

This year, approximately 60 barrels are now on their way to Cuba once again.

The number of barrels have been reduced this year because some students have graduated earlier in the year and are now back home employed at the SLBMC as medical doctors & lab technicians.

A big thank you has to be conveyed to the Cuban authorities for the training of our students.

In the next few months, another batch of students will be graduating and hence, directives were given by these students that the need of sending a barrel of supplies to them would not be necessary at this time.

Instead, sending a box or two rather than a full barrel would be better.

Each parent shared the same sentiment.

They expressed how elated they are to know that they can assist their children with such supplies.

They all think that the initiative is a great one. It is timely & very heart warming.

However, they all said packing a barrel is extremely expensive & time consuming.

Regardless,  it created a peace of mind knowing  that their children would now have to their disposal, a variety of food stuffs to choose from, which will certainly make the challenges for the students, lessened & their livelihood more enjoyable.

One parent indicated that sometimes she had difficulties enjoying her meals home here in Antigua because of the thought of some of the challenges of what her child & others are faced with in Cuba.

Recently, the parents had a meeting and their intention now, is to make the barrel initiative an annual project.

In addition, the parents have decided to form an association and hence begin to have fund raisers so that the monies raised will go towards offsetting future expenses.

A local graduation is also planned in the pipeline. Most parents are unable to go to Cuba to witness their child graduate & simultaneously celebrate with them the  momentous occasion.

As a result,  they thought it would be fitting to continue to have a local graduation so that  parents, friends & other family members can enjoy the auspicious moment with the graduants.

An invitation is extended to the cooperate citizens to come on board to assist in their future endeavors

The parents are extending commendations to Mr. Christopher Stevens, Ms. May Olga Browne & Mrs Lisay Benjamin for going beyond the call of duty to organized & coordinate the entire humanitarian project.

A special  thank you has also been conveyed to the Gov’t and the port manager Mr. Telemaque who extended such kind courtesies to waiver the fees etc; to Calvin Ayre helicopters & Mr. Georges, the manager of WIOC for their timely donation, and to the Cuban authorities for their role they have played for making the barrel initiative a success.


The parents ALL say a big thank you!

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  1. An absolutely wonderful way of Antiguan & Barbudan parents uniting to support our young ones while they are obtaining the necessary credentials to care for us and mankind overall. Hopefully next year the rest of us should contribute once there is a need. Much as gracias a Los companeros de Cuba.

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