by Subrina Mohamed-Puran
Georgetown, Guyana – October 26, 2013 – We all belong to a community in one way or another, but how well do we really know these communities? A few months ago, I came across an article in the newspaper about a group of children who were about to release a CD. Pop artists in the making? No. The CD only had one song and it wasn’t meant to be a chart topper. These children were selling CDs in order to purchase a new stove for their after school Centre.
Impressed by their efforts, I made it a priority to meet with them on my next visit to Guyana. I was struck by their potential and their willingness to contribute to the betterment of their own community at such a young age. The Ruimveldt Children’s Aid Centre (RCAC) is located at 13 Public Road, Ruimveldt and has been operational since July 18, 1991.
The Centre has an after school reading and learning program which runs from Monday-Friday and on Saturdays they hold a remedial reading program. They also have an active choir, dance, drama and singing classes. The programs are run by Mrs. Murray, Mrs. December, Ms. Saygon and Ms. Hatfield but they also rely heavily on volunteers.
I have since been involved with RCAC myself. For the past 8 months, I’ve acted as Volunteer Coordinator (based in Toronto) recruiting volunteers in Guyana with the help of social media. During my last trip to Guyana, the volunteers and I wanted to do something special for the children at the RCAC. With financial/food ration donations from Toronto, we decided to put together a full month worth of groceries in bags for 64 families. On the day of distributing groceries, we invited parents of the children who attend RCAC so that we could talk with them about the role the Centre plays in these children’s lives and to encourage them to spread the word to other families in the community.
Volunteerism is an integral part of the development process for communities like these who rely on the generosity of people like Mrs. Murray, Mrs. December, Ms. Saygon and Ms. Hatfield. They cannot do it alone. Please consider lending a hand at the Centre. Interested persons may contact Ms. Saygon at [email protected] or call us at 227-3092