Nassau, 16 Sept 2015 – Nearly 50 churches, soup kitchens and feeding centres are expected to take part in a groundbreaking workshop when the Bahamas National Feeding Network (BNFN) hosts the Ambassador Frank Crothers Inaugural Best Practices Seminar featuring one of America’s leading authorities on feeding programs. The seminar is set for September 18 from 8:30am to 2pm at the Independence Ballroom of the Melia Nassau Beach.
The Network will also launch an awareness campaign to increase the public’s consciousness on the hunger plight faced by many people in the country.
“With one in seven persons facing hunger in The Bahamas, this seminar will provide the ideal opportunity for the more than 50 churches and feeding centres that make up our membership to gain firsthand knowledge in areas ranging from fundraising, operations, management and VAT and its effect on charities,” said Philip Smith, Executive Director of the Bahamas National Feeding Network. “We are also very excited to have Bill Bolling, past Executive Director of the Atlanta Community Food Bank, an organization which monitors the distribution of millions of pounds of good but unmarketable food and grocery to some 600 non-profit partners that feed the hungry, as our keynote speaker.”
Minister of Social Services & Community Development, Hon. Melanie Griffin will officially open the first annual seminar, named after founder, His Excellency Frank Crothers Ambassador of The Embassy of Rhodes and Malta.
Minister of State for Finance, Hon. Michael Halkitis will lead a presentation on VAT and its effect on charities. Cherely Kelly, Assistant Director from the Ministry of Social Services will also lead a session. Astra Armbrister, Director of Development at the Bahamas National Trust will make a presentation on implementing and developing fundraising initiatives.
The Network was launched to try to find a better way to unite the efforts of the many churches and feeding centres in The Bahamas seeking to feed the growing number of hungry persons. Launched in December 2013, the Network has donated some $70,000 in food coupons to feeding organisations to date. The Network will increase this amount by a donation of $100,000 to its members during the upcoming workshop.
“We are very excited to be making the largest single donation in our organization’s history during the workshop,” said Smith. ”We know that the food vouchers will greatly assist our partners, enabling those who feed the hungry to serve many additional hot meals.”
Board members of the BNFN include Founder H.E. Frank Crothers, Chairman Felix Stubbs, Executive Director Philip Smith, Peter Whitehead, Shayne Davis, Patricia Hermanns, Sean Moree, Lester Ferguson, Elaine Pinder, Tony Myers and Pastor Timothy Stuart.
Member partners of BNFN are the Bahamas Red Cross, Bethel Baptist Church, Brea Seventh Day Adventist, Calvary Bible Church, Changes Ministries Int’l, Church of God of Prophecy, Club Restoration, Cornerstone Zion Ministries, Cornerstone Haitian Church, Cornerstone Zion Christian Partners of Hope, Ebenezer Methodist Church, Eljay’s Hilltop Cottage Ministries, Family of Faith Ministry, Great Commission Ministries Intl., God Temple of Praise, Heal Our Land, Judea Baptist Church, Kingdom Ambassadors World Outreach Ministries, Lakeview Church of God, Low Sound Seventh Day Adventist, Mosseff House, MCC Methodist Church, Mt. Calvary Baptist Church, Mt. Olive Baptist Church, Mt. Paran Baptist Church, New Bethany Baptist Cathedral, New Life Restoration Ministries, New Mt. Sinai Baptist Church, New Mount Zion Missionary Church, New Vision Ministries Int’l, Operation SOLD, Pentecostal Baptist Church, Remnant Tabernacle of Praise, Sanctuary of the Redeem, Seventh Day Adventist Church, Shiloh Temple Baptist, Society of St. Vincent DePaul, Solid Rock Church, South Andros Christian Center, St. Joseph’s Church, St. Michael Catholic Church, Stephen Dillet School, The Anglican Diocese, The Salvation Army, Vision of Hope Cathedral, Wesley Methodist Church, World of Hope Ministry and Youth for God Through Christ.
Over 68,000 STAYED HOME in Bahamas Elections; We have BEST and WORST for Voter Participation
#TheBahamas, September 21, 2021 – The just-concluded General Election in Bahamas has presented a new shift in governance. The former ruling part, Free National Movement, lost nearly all the electoral seats it secured in the 2017 general elections. However, this seems a swap of the Progressive Liberal party’s score in the 2017 general elections in which the former ruling party (FNM) won nearly all the parliamentary seats.
68,000 STAYED AWAY
While the FNM secured 35 out of 39 seats in the 2017 ballot, leaving only four slots for the Opposition, the 2021 elections presented “new day” with the Opposition clinching 32 parliamentary seats, leaving the former ruling party FNM with only seven slots.
However, the election results showed a significant drop in voter turnout compared to the 2017 election results. Out of 194,494 registered voters in The Bahamas, only 126,414 voted, translating to 65 per cent voter turnout.
PREVIOUS ELECTION HIGHER
This was different from the previous election in which 160,407 out of 181,543 registered voters cast their ballots, translating to a remarkable 88.36 per cent voter turnout.
Being the first election in the island nation since the Covid-19 struck the Caribbean; the dismal voter turnout could be attributed to the severe impact of the Covid-19 pandemic in The Bahamas and the current countermeasures taken by individuals to avoid contracting the deadly virus.
It could also be voter apathy.
BEST IN SHOW
Despite coronavirus prevalence in the country, North Andros & Berry Islands, Cat Island, Rum Cay & San Salvador, and Mangrove Cay & South Andros constituencies recorded an impressive voter turnout of 77.99 per cent, 76.11 per cent and 73.06 per cent respectively.
North Andros & Berry Islands had 2,126 out of 2,569 registered voters cast their ballots, followed by 1,255 out of 1,622 in Cat Island, Rum Cay & San Salvador, and 1,706 out of 2,164 registered voters in Mangrove Cay & South Andros.
VERY LOW SHOW
The bottom three constituencies in terms of voter turnout include Bamboo Town, which had 3,436 out of 5,838 (58.63 per cent) registered voters cast their ballot, followed by Garden Hills with 3,033 out of 5,287 (57.09 per cent), and Central & South Abaco falling at the bottom of the list with 1,844 out of 3,271 (55.96 per cent).
COVID Works programme launched by Ministry of Physical Planning & Infrastructure Development
#TurksandCaicos, September 21, 2021 – The Minister of Physical Planning and Infrastructure Development, the Honourable Akierra Mary Deanne Missick and the Physical Planning & Infrastructure Development team are pleased to announce the launch of the COVID WORKS Programme, that went live on September 1, 2021.
The Programme seeks to support many who have lost jobs and livelihoods, while providing labour intensive work for economic exchange opportunities for persons to be engaged.
Works are set out in three (3) levels and comprise a variety of categories example, cleaning, road works, demolition and general construction to name a few.
Level 1 – value $1,500 – $9,999
Level 2 – value $10,000 – $39,999
Level 3 – value $40,000 – $70,000
Commenting on the launch of the programme, Hon. Missick said, “We are very much mindful of the impact that restrictions introduced by Government in an effort to mitigate the spread of Covid-19, has had on the islands, many continue to experience financial hardship. Whilst, the hospitality and construction sectors in Providenciales have rebounded well, as an Administration, we cannot rest knowing that other industries are still limping along.
As a result, during the remainder of this financial year, the Turks & Caicos Islands Government has now launched the COVID Works Programme to provide an opportunity for Petty and Small Contractors to assist the Government in the enhancement of our communities, through programmed works, to the benefit of all of us as residents”.
The Minister went on to note, “This Programme is set to the tune of US$5,000,000.00, and works will be rolled out across the Islands in batches, as we have to ensure that we do not go beyond the allotted expenditure and that financial oversight and transparency are maintained.”
The initial batch of works for South Caicos, which comprised the following, was returned and evaluated on Monday, September 13, 2021 and included:
Demolition- Queen’s Shed
Demolition- Distribution Concrete Tank
Demolition- Old Clinic Building
Demolition- DECR Building
Demolition- Library Building
Repair of Water Cistern
Works for Grand Turk included:
Demolition- Blood Bank Building
Demolition- Geriatric Ward Building
Demolition- Kitchen Building
Demolition- X-ray Building
All returning bids must be sent to the COVID Works email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Kindly note that as of Monday, September 20, 2021, the following works are planned to be released:
Beach Cleaning (Eastern portion of Grand Turk)
Street Cleaning (All areas)
Beach cleaning (Areas of Shore Club and Five Cays)
Street Cleaning (All areas)
A number of other works for Middle & North Caicos, as well as Salt Cay will be released shortly. This is a six month program that will spread throughout the TCI and we encourage persons to continue to register via email@example.com or the local Public Works Department and District Commissioners’ offices, to be eligible for this opportunity.
These works will continue on a monthly basis and the programme will come to an end in March 2022.
BAHAMAS: Nine new Cabinet ministers sworn-in
#TheBahamas, September 21, 2021 – Prime Minister the Hon. Philip Davis today introduced the first set of new Cabinet ministers with portfolios covering the Attorney General, Foreign Affairs, Education, Works and Public Utilities, Health and Wellness, Government Affairs, Agriculture, National Security and Legal Affairs.
The nine ministers were sworn-in on Monday 20 September 2021 by Governor-General the Most Hon. Sir Cornelius A. Smith during ceremonies held at the Baha Mar Convention Center.
“They are the initial members of a Cabinet which will reflect the breadth and depth of the competencies and characteristics of our team: experience combined with innovation; expertise combined with a willingness to see things anew; integrity and a strong sense of purpose,” said Prime Minister Davis.
“They are receiving these appointments because of their determination to get things done.”
- Senator the Hon. L. Ryan Pinder, Attorney General;
- Hon. Fred Mitchell, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Public Service;
- Hon. Glenys Hanna-Martin, Minister of Education, and Technical and Vocational Training;
- Hon. Alfred Sears, Minister of Works and Utilities;
- Dr. Hon. Michael Darville, Minister of Health and Wellness;
- Senator the Hon. Michael Halkitis, Minister of Government Affairs and Leader of Government Business in the Senate;
- Hon. Clay Sweeting, Minister of Agriculture, Marine Resources and Family Island Affairs;
- Hon. Wayne Munroe, Minister of National Security; and
- Hon. Jomo Campbell, Minister of State for Legal Affairs.
“I am confident that these first-appointed members of our Cabinet team are ready to deliver on the promise of a New Day for our Bahamas,” said the Prime Minister.
Prime Minister Davis pledged to move with urgency to address the economic and health crises that are faced by The Bahamas.
Many thousands of Bahamians are out of work, people are losing too many loved ones to the COVID-19 virus and Bahamian schoolchildren are falling behind, said Prime Minister Davis.
“I want to be clear: we are not here to tinker at the edges of these problems,” said the Prime Minister.
“We are here to meet them head on.”
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