Salvation Army, Lions Children’s Home begins
October 19, 2007

Salvation Army, Lions Children’s Home begins

Gloria Gatherer must be smiling in heaven now that her noble idea is coming to fruition; construction work has started on the Salvation Army / Lions Club Children’s Home.{{more}}

Past Council Chair of the Lions Club multiple district Beverly Reddock told SEARCHLIGHT that the idea of the facility came about when the late Gatherer, who was then a Lion, saw a two-year-old child eating from a garbage bin in Kingstown. “She came to meeting quite broken up and said this should not be allowed to happen to any child in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG),” Reddock related.

Reddock said that the Lions began working on the idea and acquired a piece of land at Campden Park, but that land was subsequently taken over by squatters so they had to put their plans on hold.

After hearing of the Salvation Army’s plans to also build a home for children, the Lions joined forces with them. Under Major Ronald Ellis, the government gave the Salvation Army just over an acre of land next to the Golden Years Centre at Pembroke; this is where the new home for children will be built.

The design drawings for the two-story building were donated by CCA Limited and the building contractor is Fitzroy King. King said that the original cost of building was $3.4 million, but with VAT and inflation, it would come to just around $4 million and will take about two and a half years to complete.

When finished, the home will have an initial intake of 30 children and will mainly cater to abused and abandoned children. Children from as young as birth will be accepted and they will live there until they reach 18 years old, according to Major Henry King. “We will try to give them a normal as possible family life”, he further stated. There will also be a nursery school/care facility at the home.

A brief ceremony was held at the location on Monday to officially launch the construction of the children’s home. (AC)