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Amanda & Friends Amazing Journey: FootSteps4Good 2022 raises over 50k in 13 days

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, November 4, 2022 – Another amazing staging of Footsteps4Good has come to a close, this year the 200-mile journey had a newcomer on the team as three more hikers attempted to circumnavigate the Turks and Caicos.

The thirteen day event started on Friday October 21 at the Children’s Park in Providenciales before it took off on a 16 mile walk before landing on Parrot Cay.  The trekkers signed up for the monumental escapade were:  Amanda Dakin, wife of TCI Governor Nigel Dakin; John Galleymore, a retired military man and explorer and Sharon Weil Hornstein.

Day 2 on Saturday October 22 was a journey from Parrot Cay, a luxury resort island and onto Conch Bar, which is in Middle Caicos.  It was a whopping 23 mile stretch, which was done mostly on foot.

Day 3  on Sunday October 23rd, there would be more hiking for the trio.  A 15 mile walk from the Conch Bar to Dickish Cay was charted as sketchy weather rolled in.

Day 4 on Monday October 24th the team bid farewell to Dickish Cay and waved hello to Breezy Point on East Caicos, that we were informed was a 14 mile journey.  As they covered the half marathon distance, there was rain, but according to Mrs. Dakin, this was welcomed.

“We walked through the rain but it was only for two hours – a good shower to get off the salt and sweat- well some of it!”

Day 5, Tuesday October 25th we lost contact for a bit but soon learned there was yet again success after an 18 mile hike from Breezy Point to South Caicos.  The three happily abandoned ‘roughing it’ to spend a relaxing night at the award-winning Sail Rock Resort in South Caicos.

John Galleymore paused his journey here, making way for the all-female rowing team composed of Mandy, Sharon and supporters Kana and Morgan to join the journey, which has taken on new form since it was introduced by Jill Beckingham, wife of former governor Peter Beckingham who also walked each island with throngs of supporters in an effort to raise funds for TCI charities.

Mrs. Beckingham’s mission was historic and admirable but did not include covering the oceans linking the Turks and Caicos Islands.

The circumnavigation, powered solely by human steam in walks and rowing, is an idea which is successfully now done its second year having brought all home safe and racking up thousands of dollars for worthy causes.

About some of the most challenging times, Dakin told us “The walking was tough, East Caicos is no joke… lots of sand, wading through water, mosquitos like you wouldn’t believe.”  She seemed to take a spill on those rocks ending up with a bloody nose but was not deterred by the injury.

Day 6 on Wednesday October 26th was the first water crossing, a 25-mile row from South Caicos to Grand Turk. Dakin detailed the experience, “The water… I have never seen it so flat! So we made record timing across from South Caicos to Grand Turk in 5 hours 45 minutes.”

The Day 7 journey on Thursday October 27 from Grand Turk to Salt Cay was a 12-mile route which the team knocked out in an hour and a half before a full rest day on Day 8 (Friday October 28).

Then on Day 9, which was Saturday October 29th the team went 10 miles from Salt to Sand Cay.   Following that, on Day 10, Sunday October 30th we learned of a 25 mile journey from Sand Cay to Ambergris before the longest sea crossing of them all.

That came up on Day 11, Monday October 31st and it meant a 40-mile journey from Ambergris to French Cay.

Day 12, which was Tuesday November 1st was no walk in the park, it also involved another 150 mile row, this time French Cay to West Caicos which meant an incredible 35 hours was pass before that grand finale.  Day 13, which was Wednesday November 2nd. The ladies marched along with Providenciales locals when they arrived in Sapodilla Bay before making it to the Bight, right back where they started to wrap up an amazing expedition.

Mandy Dakin told us it was decidedly worth all the blisters from rowing and walking so much.

“A little bit of pain goes a long way, all of these people that we’re raising money for are in vulnerable states, they have a difficult time and they deserve our respect and support. And if a little pain is what it takes then that’s what we’ll do.”

A decidedly happy husband, also clearly proud of his wife and the team which pulled off the phenomenal jaunt, Nigel Dakin, TCI Governor posted about the nights in comfort and those spent outdoors under the stars and how the effort broke the mold, in terms of funds raised.

“But what the whole collective achieved was a sizeable donation to a multitude of different charities that the donor nominates. It’s not too late to add a small amount and if you do @footsteps4goodtci breaks the $50k barrier.”

You can still make a donation when you download the Isle Help app and give to Foosteps4Good and the charity of your choice.

Caribbean News

Barbados bestows Humanitarian Award on PAHO director Dr. Carissa Etienne 

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By Shanieka Smith

Staff Writer

 

#Barbados, November 25, 2022 – The newest recipient of Barbados’ Humanitarian Award is outgoing Pan American Health Organization Director, Dr Carissa Etienne.  The government of Barbados grants this award to frontline workers who were instrumental during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Upon receiving the award, Dr. Etienne expressed her gratitude for the recognition, noting, however, that she was more grateful for the opportunity to have served on the island. She also praised Prime Minister, Mia Mottley for her diligence in leading the country and regional involvement during the pandemic.

Humanitarian medals were also given to Frontline workers who risked their own safety to ensure the needs of the public were met. Those who held supporting roles on the frontline received humanitarian lapel pins, and those who made generous donations were given humanitarian plaques.

Dr. Etienne highlighted one major lesson from the pandemic, “we are only safe when the weakest among us is also safe”.

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Bahamas News

Bahamas and Turks & Caicos Immigration Ministers make appearance on TCI Radio Talk Show

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TheBahamas, November 25, 2022 – “We have a humanitarian concern of course but we can only absorb so much” was how Fred Mitchell, Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Public Service in The Bahamas addressed the issue of the UN constantly nudging Caribbean countries about the deportation of migrants and recommending that it not be done.

He was speaking Thursday November 24 with Cheryl and Zhavargo on First Edition which airs on RTC FM.

While acknowledging that the UN offices likely ‘have to do what they do’ Minister Mitchell  explained that the current irregular migrants trying to get into the Bahamas did not fit the bill of ‘refugees’ as defined by the UN.

“We have a treaty obligation that says that if people have a fear of persecution in their home country that we have an obligation to take them in as asylum seekers. The people who come through on these boats from the south of us are not asylum seekers. They are afraid of poverty and that’s a difficult issue but in a legal sense we’re not obligated to embrace people on that basis.”

He cited a study that had found, on any given day there were around 7,000 illegal migrants in The Bahamas trying to get to the US maintaining that his chain of islands had to take a stand on the issue.  The Foreign Affairs minister acknowledged that  TCI was in an identical situation, citing also the the cultural effects of irregular migration.

“There is a cleavage which has developed in our own society over this; people are very concerned that we could lose our identity if we do not get on top of it.”

Earlier this year Arlington “new sheriff in town” Musgrove, Minister of Immigration and Border Services in the Turks and Caicos had described statements calling on surrounding countries to do more to assist persons fleeing Haiti as “reckless and misguided.”

“Haiti has a population of 11.6 million people. How could any small developing state like the Turks and Caicos Islands assist that number of people or even the smallest fraction of them? We have a population of some 47,000 persons, and our health care, education and other social systems remain fragile and could never withstand an influx of refugees. This would be a risk to our very own livelihood,” he had said.

He was interviewed in the same show on Thursday prior to Mitchell and expressed a similar determination to crack down on illegal migration.

“I want to stress this. If we catch anyone harbouring illegals, it could be my mommy, she’s going up. We cannot tolerate this. We’re catching the sloops so my Haitian brothers and sisters should stress to them don’t waste your money we’re sending you back.”

Turks and Caicos, this year passed a law, doubling fines and prison times for individuals harbouring illegal migrants.

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Caribbean News

JAMAICA: Government Revenues Soar

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#Kingston, November 25, 2022 – There has been a jump in Government revenue collection, with tax revenues for the first six months of the fiscal year exceeding budget by $35 billion.

Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. the Hon. Nigel Clarke, said that the out-turn is as a result of higher-than-expected economic performance.

“The first quarter growth came out at 5.7 per cent… and all categories of revenue are over budget. Revenues from income and profits are up by nearly 13 per cent or $10 billion,” Dr. Clarke said.

In addition, he noted that revenues from production and consumption are up by seven per cent or $7 billion and revenues from international trade are up by 15 per cent or $18 billion. Revenues from motor-vehicle licences for the first six months of this year are 16 per cent higher than budgeted.

Dr. Clarke was speaking in the House of Representatives on Tuesday (November 22) where the First Supplementary Estimates for 2022/23 were approved.

The approval reflects a revised expenditure of $971 billion, from the previously approved budget of $912 billion for the financial year.

Minister Clarke said the First Supplementary Estimates come within the context of positive overperformance of the economy.

“As a result of this revenue overperformance… we are able to come to this Parliament six months after and put a Budget that proposes $60 billion in new expenditure,” Dr. Clarke said.

The largest component of the supplementary budget is the allocation for public-sector salaries and wages in keeping with the restructuring of compensation.

“We are allocating $16 billion there and there is another $2 billion to the Ministry of Health and Wellness and then about $3 billion for statutory deductions, making a total of $21 billion,” the Minister said.

 

Contact: Latonya Linton

Release: JIS

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