May 4, 2007
Service clubs urged to help curb violence, drug trafficking

SERVICE CLUBS have been called to be more active in curbing violence and drug trafficking and use in this country. This plea has been sounded by Gillian John, who was the feature speaker at the Soroptimist International of St Vincent and the Grenadines 20th Annual General Meeting.{{more}}

Delivering an address under the theme, “Words Whisper, Actions Shout!” John pointed out that over $350 million worth in cocaine was recently destroyed and there were also serious problems with marijuana use here. She said that drug pushers were now making open threats to wipe out entire families if their shipments were not met and said that this was an indication of the breakdown in the society.

The speaker also said that many of the deaths recorded for the year have been related to the drug trade or domestic violence and said that there was too much intolerance.

She pleaded, “It’s time for us, not just within the organization, but as citizens of this country to shout our concerns and take actions which will help to return our country to being St Vincent land so beautiful. Difficult task? Yes, impossible? No!”

John said that too many members of clubs were “members by name only” and were not active in making changes to impact the society.

She emphasized, “Membership in an organization does not only mean standing up and saying the words and wearing the uniform. Membership means standing up and being counted when others are depending on your action.”

The feature speaker pointed out that in a world where people use electrical gadgets and appliances to save time, they still complain of being too busy to be members of service clubs.

John, who is a member of the Lions Club and the New Kingstown Chorale commended Soroptimists for their work done on the construction and maintenance of comfort stations throughout capital, the Pre School at Barrouallie, the Helping Hands Centre and the granting of scholarships and urged members of Soroptimist International to never grow weary in well doing.

“An inch doesn’t look anything like a yard but then the yard is made up of inches, so inch your way towards achieving your goals. I say to you keep your eye on the prize. You are not serving in the organization for personal glory but you are working towards building a better St Vincent and the Grenadine,” she concluded.

At the event which was held at the Haddon Hotel on April 21, the patron was Gloria Lady Antrobus while Dr Shirley Robinson was re-elected President.

President Elect is Anelle Thomas, Vice President Shirla Little, Treasurer Kathryn Cyrus, Immediate Past President Zeitha Hadaway, Programme Action Coordinator Norma Knights, Councilor Anelle Thomas, SCICN Chairperson Kathryn Cyrus, Committee Members Nelcia Primus, Nina Maloney, Joyce Haynes and Agnes De Roche.

Lonique Wallace, a 17-year-old student of the Community College received her annual scholarship cheque of $1,300 from the club while Junior Bacchus of the Helping Hands Centre received a donation from the Soroptimists on behalf of his organization. Also receiving a donation on behalf of the National Society of Persons with Disabilities was Norma Knights.

Soroptimist International of St Vincent and the Grenadines would be holding the prestigious Soroptimist International Caribbean Network 19th General Meeting and 15th Conference of Clubs from July 18-21.