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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

BIRTH CERTIFICATE IN BRAILLE

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KINGSTON, May 8 (JIS): BY: SHERIKA HALL

For many years, members of the visually impaired community have faced significant challenges in accessing printed information, often having to rely on others for assistance.

This lack of autonomy has hindered their ability to fully participate in various aspects of society.

However, with the recent implementation of Braille birth certificates, this long-standing barrier is being removed, paving the way for a more inclusive landscape where individuals with visual impairments can navigate their own journeys with greater independence and confidence.

On May 1, 2024, Executive Director at the Jamaica Society for the Blind (JSB), Conrad Harris, was the first person to receive a copy of the freshly printed Braille document.

He expresses his elation to JIS News, describing it as a “great experience” to have a document in a format that he can easily read.

“One of the issues we have from time to time is that when we have information that is in print, we may ask somebody to read it, but the person who reads it might only read the information that they think is important and not necessarily everything in the document,” Mr. Harris explains.

This, of course, is no longer the case, as “having a Braille certificate means that I am able to go through it myself. I can easily check the spellings of names and places, which I might not be easily able to do with something that is in print,” he said.

The Braille certificate also provides an opportunity for the document to be easily identified and separated from others.

“If you need it for a particular reason, you can easily separate it from the other documents that you have versus probably having to ask somebody to look through or using some kind of technology to scan the information, which would take a little bit longer,” the Executive Director says.

Additionally, this initiative will provide an added sense of security as there are those people who generally want to keep their personal information private.

Designed in collaboration with several key stakeholders, including the Registrar General’s Department (RGD), these Braille certificates are meticulously crafted to ensure that every detail is conveyed with precision and elegance.

Each certificate, according to the Department’s former Chief Executive Officer and Deputy Keeper of Records, Charlton McFarlane, features embossed Braille text, allowing recipients to tangibly experience the pride that comes with being able to read the information for themselves.

He further shared details on why the initiative was undertaken in the first place, during an interview with JIS News.

Mr. McFarlane said that while participating in the first post-COVID Civil Registration Conference for Latin America and Caribbean countries, held in the Dominican Republic in 2022, using civil registration as the basis for inclusivity was key among the topics discussed.

“We looked at some case studies and the one that stood out to me was for a State in Mexico that offered birth certificates and other vital documents in Braille,” he said.

He even went as far back as 2008 when he was serving as a Director within the Ministry of Health.

During that time “we collaborated with members from the disabled community to produce health education material in Braille. So, with that experience, knowing what it had done and then with what I saw happening in Mexico, I got the idea that we could really produce all vital documents in Braille”.

Before embarking on the initiative, he acknowledged that he did, in fact, reach out to members of the JSB, the Combined Disabilities Association and the Jamaica Counsel for Persons with Disabilities.

“I don’t like to waste time and resources, so I reached out to them first,” Mr. McFarlane said, adding that “once I received a resounding yes, details on how to produce the certificates were shared.

“One of the things we [had to take into consideration] was having two separate documents (one with the standard print and the other in Braille), because the Braille is bulky when printed,” he noted.

This posed another challenge as not many business entities would accept the braille copy due to their inability to read the Braille text.

However, as the consultations went on, a decision was made to have the two documents intertwined into one.

“Right now, how it’s done, is the material is printed and then the Braille is embossed over it,” the former CEO said.

The introduction of Braille certificates is not just a symbolic gesture, it represents a tangible commitment that “the Government is absolutely very, very serious about inclusion for every single citizen, regardless of the level of vulnerability that may exist,” Mr. McFarlane added.

This certificate, he added, is not only for members of the visually impaired community but for all persons who would like to have their birth certificates in both print and Braille formats on one document.

 

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Turks and Caicos Retains Championship at 28th Annual Caribbean Classic Golf Tournament

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Please note:

Photos by TCI Sports Commission

Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – In an historic showing, the Turks and Caicos Islands Golf Association (TCIGA) dominated the 28th annual Caribbean Classic Golf Tournament, held in Casa de Campo, Dominican Republic, from April 25th to 27th, 2024. The victory marks a turning point for TCI golf, and much of the credit goes to the exceptional team of players assembled by Sean Wilson the Head Professional at the Royal Turks and Caicos Golf Course.

56 golfers, playing under the banner of the TCIGA were rewarded for their enthusiastic participation across both the Men’s and Women’s divisions.

“This back-to-back win is an indication of the growing interest and increased participation in the sport of golf in TCI,” stated TCIGA President Fraser Dods.

“We’ve been competing at this tournament since its inception almost 30 years ago, and finally bringing home the George Noon Cup two years in a row is a truly proud moment for Turks and Caicos golf.”

Clean Sweep for Team TCI

The team’s success was based on strong and determined performances in every flight and category.

The Turks and Caicos men’s team secured the Robert Grell Trophy, while the ladies claimed the Jodi Munn Barrow Trophy.

This clean sweep across all team divisions highlights the growing depth and talent within the TCI Golf Association membership.

The “Classic”organized by the Caribbean Golf Association, brings together golfers from the twelve membercountries of the CGA. The Caribbean Classic is an individual and team event, competed for by teams of unlimited number of players from each participating member country, playing eighteen holes of golf each , over 3 days.

Team Turks and Caicos amassed the most points overall and won the George Noon Cup last year, for the first time in 27 years of competing at this event. To repeat as champs is a proud moment for TCI sports in general and for TCI Golf specifically.

Individual Accolades Abound

Beyond the team triumphs, individual golfers from TCI shone brightly. Female players, namely Wendy Ayer, Christine Dickenson, Tazmaraa Gowans, and Andrea Todd, all secured podium finishes in their respective divisions

The men’s side also saw impressive performances from Justin Simons, Mark Fulford, Arthur Lightbourne, Mervin Cox, and Simon Dobbs. Their individual excellence contributed significantly to the overall team victory.

Looking Ahead: Building on Success

TCI Director of Sports Jarrett Forbes is optimistic about the future. “This win exemplifies the immense potential of golf in the Turks and Caicos,” he stated. “We encourage young islanders to take up this fantastic sport.”

Head Golf Professional at Royal Turks and Caicos Golf Club, Sean Wilson, echoed the sentiment. “This is a monumental achievement for TCI golf,” he said. “Bringing home trophies in all three divisions is a testament to the hard work and dedication of the TCIGA and its players.”

The Caribbean Classic second victory creates a new legacy for golf in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

The TCIGA is administrated by a golf-loving volunteer executive comprised of Fraser Dods, Mark Fulford (VP), Denise Douglas (Secretary), Paul Murray (Treasurer), Andrea Todd and Roberto Stipa.Through their collective efforts, and the growing participation of TCI golfers, the future looks bright for this sport in the region.

The Caribbean Classic is one of the highlights of the Caribbean Golf calendar. Organized by the Caribbean Golf Association, it allows participation of amateurs from 12 countries, including the Turks and Caicos, Puerto Rico, Guadalupe, the Bahamas, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Dominican Republic, Barbados, the Cayman Islands, Martinique, St Lucia, and USVI.”

 

 

 

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GRACE BAY BEACH RANKED AMONG TOP BEACHES IN THE WORLD’S 50 BEST BEACHES

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PROVIDENCIALES, TURKS AND CAICOS ISLANDS (May 3rd, 2024) The Turks and Caicos Islands’ Grace Bay Beach has once again been recognised among the top beaches in the world.

The World’s 50 Best Beaches has listed Grace Bay Beach among the top beaches in the world.

Grace Bay Beach, located on the island of Providenciales was listed at number 17 on the annual list.

The World’s 50 Best Beaches list, sponsored by Banana Boat, is a collaboration with over 1,000 of the world’s leading travel influencers and professionals.

The World’s 50 Best Beaches 2024 is a reflection of the opinions and experiences of top travel influencers and professionals around the world. The beaches were ranked according to eight important criteria: unique characteristics, wildlife, untouched, soundtrack of nature, easy to enter the water, often calm water, not too crowded and frequency of idyllic conditions.

Grace Bay Beach also featured among the top 20 in the 2023 World’s 50 Best Beaches list.

This is the latest accolade for Grace Bay Beach this year. Known for its powdery white sand and breathtakingly turquoise blue water, the famous beach was adjudged the number one Caribbean beach in February in Tripadvisor’s® Travelers’ Choice® Awards and Best of the Best for 2024, ranking number five among the Top 25 Best of the Best Beaches in the world.

In January 2024, Grace Bay was recognised as the #9 Best Beach in the Caribbean in the 10Best Reader’s Choice with Bambarra Beach in Middle Caicos ranked at #2.

Minister of Tourism, the Honourable Josephine Connolly said she is proud of the continued recognition of the leading beach in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

“As a destination that prioritises sustainable development and environmental preservation, the fact that Grace Bay Beach features consistently as one of the top beaches in the world stands as a testament to our commitment to stay “Beautiful by Nature”. I urge visitors to come to the Turks and Caicos Islands to experience this and many other of our beautiful beaches across the Turks and Caicos Islands,” said the Minister.

Tine Holst, Co-Founder of The World’s 50 Best Beaches, said the list is meant to inspire travellers.

She said: “Our 2024 list is a reflection of the countless days spent by our judges, Beach Ambassadors and World’s 50 Best team discovering beaches around the world. The list will help inspire travelers to leave the beaten path behind and enjoy the most stunning and relaxing beaches on earth”.

Read World’s 50 Best Beaches description of Grace Bay Beach here.

 

About the Turks and Caicos Islands

The Turks and Caicos Islands is made up of two groups of islands in the Lucayan Archipelago: The larger Caicos Islands and the smaller Turks Islands, thus the name. It is home to the best beaches in the world with majestic white sand and crystal-clear turquoise waters. Each island and cay are a destination of its own. Providenciales is home to world-renowned Grace Bay Beach, luxury hotels, resorts, villas, spas and restaurants. Grand Turk is ‘home away from home’ for our cruise passengers, and our sister islands are the gateway to nature, exploration, and culture. Considered the world’s best-kept secret, TCI is an effortless escape – with an ease of connectivity through direct flights from major cities in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

 

CONTACT: Laura Dowrich  Email: ldowrich@myexperiencetci.com

 

 

 

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