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Fire in Leeward Palms Tuesday night, homeowner has a warning for the rest of us



By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer


#TurksandCaicos, June 30, 2022 – After nearly half of her home was destroyed by fire Tuesday night one resident from Leeward Palms wants to remind homeowners that burglary is not the only thing they should remain vigilant about.

The  homeowner, who asked to remain anonymous wanted to share her story in the hopes it would help other residents to be prepared in the event of any emergency or danger.

She explained that on Tuesday night, she had retired for the evening and was in bed when her dog began barking suspiciously as if to alert her. Immediately she peered out of the windows of the home she shared with her son but in seeing nothing suspicious she got back into bed.

Unbeknownst to her, the eastern side of her house which she could not see from her window was ablaze at that very moment.

Further tragedy was prevented by a Good Samaritan who noticed the flames and rang her son who was at work at the West Bay Club at the time to inform him. Immediately he started home and called to alert his mother who grabbed the dog and got out of the burning building.

The Domestic Firefighters were called for assistance with the blaze but it was the Leeward Palms residents who saved the day. Armed only with regular low-pressure garden hoses the son and neighbors managed to put out the fire in the reported 45-minutes it took the fire crew to arrive on scene.

While no one was hurt, the family especially her son sustained significant losses and the resident, who is an employee with the TCI Government is warning other Turks and Caicos residents that a little vigilance can go a long way.

Fire emergency experts say you may have as little as two minutes to escape a blazing home. Caribbean people love to say ‘ you neva see smoke without fiyah’ but what if like you can’t see the smoke?

An easy way to get immediate alerts about any potential blaze is to install smoke detectors in your home. Portable smoke detectors that you can attach to the walls or just place on a shelf in each room retail for as low as $12 on Amazon.

Fire extinguishers are especially handy because water won’t put out every type of fire, trying to spray water on an oil fire will only make it worse as oil floats on water (which is how fires can last on the ocean). There are large and small ones available online for as low as $10 dollars.

Even more protection can come in the form of sprinklers, these do need expert installation and are good deal more pricey than a smoke detector but are a guaranteed defense for potential fires when no one is at home.

Another level of protection not necessary for fires but still important for anyone with an A/C unit is a carbon monoxide detector. Retailing for as low as $30 on Amazon these are especially important. Carbon monoxide does not have a scent or visible marker but can make you ill from small bouts of exposure  and can easily kill an adult while they are asleep.

Encourage your children not to leave curling irons or similar implements plugged in, pay attention to stoves microwaves, coffee pots, toasters, irons and ovens to make sure they are not touching flammable surfaces and are always unplugged when not in use.

Check your smoke alarm batteries regularly to make sure they still work and purchase home and contents insurance plans to protect your assets and ensure a smooth recovery. Contents insurance may also be a good idea as home insurance may only cover the building while everything that really matters is inside.

Keep your important documents together in one central location that you can grab quickly. Even better would be housing them in a fireproof safe so when the dust settles you can recover them and they will be good as new.

In the unfortunate case that there is a fire you can’t control or prevent, every family should have a fire emergency plan with escape routes. Practice your plan several times a year and make sure your children know it well.

Most importantly do not try to move anything out or save anything! Get your family and pets out immediately; lives are irreplaceable.

In this case, lives were spared and so were important documents; the home is also insured.  Now, with investigators having completed their assessment of the scene, the family awaits information on what triggered the fire and report to us that they are busy mopping up water, clearing debris and cleaning soot from walls and ceiling.

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Caribbean News

Wal Registre’s Impressive Rise at BTC



PROVIDENCIALES, Turks & Caicos Islands: When Wal Registre started his career at Beaches Turks and Caicos (BTC) on October 25, 1997 as a bartender, little did he know that 25 years after, he would have risen to the post of payroll administrator within the same organisation.

The Raymond Gardiner High School graduate was always good at accounting and mathematics and had the dream of excelling in the hospitality industry in an area that would best fit his passion and academic strength.

Having been promoted to bar supervisor in 1999, Wal’s vision for growth was still active as he recognised that being a team member at Beaches Turks and Caicos would allow him to excel beyond his comfort zone. Following the completion of a number of courses with the Sandals Corporate University (SCU), he transitioned to the Cost Control unit in the Accounting Department as the cost control clerk.

Wal pointed out that his ability to grow within the company was largely due to his commitment to excellence. The SCU courses that were offered gave him the added training needed to build on what he was able to learn on the job and from his mentors.

“At BTC, training is very important to each employee. There are many opportunities for professional development and with the guidance from the Learning and Development team, and the leaders within the company, team members can truly grow,” Registre added.

One of Wal’s colleagues, Janet King, noted, “Wal’s commitment serves as an example to every team member here. His ability to grow from an entry level position to where he is now shows that everyone can succeed once they put their minds to it.”

While expressing his commitment to his profession, Wal’s dedication and discipline are traits that he values and chooses to pass on to those he leads. In sharing his advice to younger professionals seeking to enter the industry, he noted, “this organisation believes in quality work life balance that will allow each team member valuable time with family. This period helps me to maintain a bond with my family and explore the world. Training within this company is available for everyone and the ability to grow professionally is dependent on each person having the right attitude to grow.”


Release: BTC

Photo Captions

Header:Wal Registre, Payroll Administrator at Beaches Turks and Caicos makes final checks as he goes through documents at his desk at the resort

Insert: Anna Francis, Accountant in the Finance department at Beaches Turks and Caicos and Wal Registre, Payroll Administrator at the resort pause from discussing work related items to smile for the camera

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Caribbean News

Special Needs Unit Students at Thelma Lightbourne Primary School recognised by BTC



PROVIDENCIALES, Turks & Caicos Islands –  Parents and students from the Special Education Unit at the Thelma Lightbourne Primary School were recently recognized by the Beaches Turks and Caicos team during a special session at the institution as part of autism awareness activities.

Children’s Activities Manager Fedeline Julien shared, “educating students, parents, teachers and other adults about the best practices of dealing with children with autism is needed especially in our homes and schools. Children who are autistic do things differently and should be treated with patience and care.”

Robin Cox Foster, principal of the school said, “the partnership between Beaches Turks and Caicos and our school is always welcome. As the only resort on island that is an autism certified centre, they were readily available to share with our students and their parents. The involvement of the Sesame Street character, the presentations from the Kids Camp team to the parents allowed those present to appreciate their roles in being change agents for autism.”

Caring for a child with special needs was highlighted as an opportunity to create a closer bond between child and parent/caregivers.

Walter Moore, who has a son on the spectrum shared, “being able to deal with the many challenges of a special needs child will assist parents in being more patient and creative in how they care for a child. My son and I are best friends. He is comfortable talking with me about anything and I have to learn how to respect his likes and dislikes and create an environment that makes him happy.”

Beaches Turks and Caicos’ Kids Camp is an Advanced Certified Autism Centre which ensures that team members have the required knowledge, skills, temperament, and expertise to cater to all children. The resort offers age-specific programmes for infants, toddlers, pre-teens and teens.


Release: BTC


Photo Captions:

Header: Tanya Swann (left), Director of Sales, Groups and Conventions at Beaches Turks and Caicos introduces the team of volunteers who were present while Robin Cox-Foster, school principal looks on

1st Insert: Walter Moore (left) Beaches Turks and Caicos team member shares a moment with his son (right) and Sesame Street character Sesame Street

2nd Insert: Some members of the Beaches Turks and Caicos Sandals Foundation team share a moment at the Thelma Lightbourne Primary School during a presentation to the institution

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Caribbean News

CARPHA Plans Activities for Caribbean Nutrition Day and Caribbean Nutrition Awareness Month



Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. 1 June 2023. The Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) joins the Caribbean Association of Nutritionists and Dietitians (CANDi) and countries in the Caribbean region in commemorating Caribbean Nutrition Day (1 June) and Caribbean Nutrition Awareness Month (June) 2023.

Caribbean Nutrition Day and Awareness Month are annual regional nutrition education and information campaigns that aim to promote healthy eating and active living in populations using a promotion-based approach. To kick-start the month, Caribbean Nutrition Day will be observed under the theme: “Let’s Nourish to Flourish…Your Mental Health Matters.” It was first celebrated on 1 June 2004 and became a month-long observance in response to the growing recognition of nutrition in disease prevention and health promotion.  Caribbean Nutrition Awareness Month provides an opportunity to promote and encourage health seeking behaviours on a range of topics and across multiple sections of the population.

“CARPHA has planned a series of activities to commemorate these campaigns, and to raise awareness of the importance of nutrition. This includes the launch of a Diabetes Nutritional Management Toolkit.  A social media campaign will also be rolled out to engage the public on nutrition and mental health and nutritional management of NCDs in the region,” said Dr. Joy St. John, Executive Director at CARPHA.

The observance of Caribbean Nutrition Day originated from the former Caribbean Food and Nutrition Institute (CFNI); one of five institutions subsumed under the Caribbean Public Health Agency.

 Events scheduled include:


  1. Fifth Meeting of the CARPHA Six Point Policy Package (6-PPP) Inter-Agency Technical Committee (ITC) on Monday 12 June 2023.

The 6-point policy package is a framework instituted in 2017 to promote healthier food environments and food security to address childhood obesity (and non-communicable diseases) through joint policy action. The 6-PPP includes policy recommendations to address: (1) Food Labelling; (2) Nutrition Standards and Guidelines for Schools and other Institutions; (3) Food Marketing; (4) Nutritional Quality of Food Supply; (5) Trade and Fiscal Policies; and (6) Food Chain Incentives. The ITC comprises of CARICOM institutions and other agencies with responsibility for economic and social sectors to collectively monitor and coordinate the implementation of the 6-PPP.

  • Webinar to launch the Diabetes Nutritional Management Toolkit on Tuesday 13 June 2023.

The toolkit – comprising of booklets, posters, flyer and recipes for both the health care professional and person with diabetes – will standardise the nutritional management of diabetes in primary care in the Caribbean. The toolkit was developed in 2022 following a Rapid Needs Assessment of Nutrition Services in primary health care in a representative 10 Member States. This initiative was funded by the Agence Française de Développement (AFD) through the CARPHA-led project “Strengthening Strategic Intelligence and Partnership Approaches to Prevent and Control NCDs and Strengthen Regional Health Security in the Caribbean”.

Click here to register in advance for this Webinar

CARPHA will also disseminate an article “Nutrition for Good Mental Health”.  The article will highlight the essential role nutrition (nutrients) play in the functioning of the nervous system and key elements of the diet to ensure good mental health.

We encourage persons to follow CARPHA’s social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram – for updates and pertinent information on nutrition for good mental health and NCDs management.

CARPHA will also be supporting its Member States in their celebration of Caribbean Nutrition Day and Awareness Month.

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