Imagine having to stand in the corridor or having to sit on the ground or even the stairs to have meals on a daily basis. This has been the uncomfortable reality of the Sir Ira Simmons Secondary School students for several years. The two dilapidated lunch tables which were meant to cater to the population of over 620 students were hardly adequate. Thanks to the Super J IGA Unity in Community programme, the school has benefited from funding and manpower from CFL volunteers to build twelve lunch tables which will allow the students to sit comfortably during break and lunch periods and interact with their peers with ease.
Though several great projects were submitted from Castries, the lack of proper sitting facilities outside the classrooms of a school as large as the Sir Ira Simmons Secondary was significant enough to draw the attention of judges of the Super J IGA Unity in Community programme.
The twelve newly-built lunch tables were officially unveiled during the school’s special Independence Anniversary celebrations, themed “the Journey”, on Thursday February 19.School Principal Mrs. Marie George-Arlain applauded CFL for being a model corporate citizen saying, “My vision for our school is for it to be one of the leading schools on island. I think that by improving the overall learning environment with projects such as this one, we are making learning more conducive for our students. Thank you CFL for sharing in our vision and bringing us one step closer to this dream.”
The ceremony was a very significant one not only for CFL as a company but for two of its staff members who volunteered on the project. Marvin Demille and Christopher Clercin, former students of the Sir Ira Simmons Secondary School who are currently employed at Super J IGA Waterfront, were present for the unveiling. For them, it was a proud moment, having worked diligently on this project which will make the school setting more comfortable for the students of their alma mater.
CFL’s Managing Director Martin Dorville thanked the teachers and students of the school for allowing CFL to be part of their journey. “You have been thanking us but we are the ones who should be thanking you today. When we started the Unity in Community programme our mission was to not only bring about change in the community but also to inspire others to do the same. I am excited
about this journey, especially when I see the unique collaborations which have been forged between various businesses in Saint Lucia as a result.”
Mr. Dorville also noted the partnership which the school had developed with Blueprint Construction Ltd who offered guidance and built the lunch tables for the school at no cost. As a result of the savings the school is now able to refurbish their Mathematics Lab.
“Community outreach is always a good thing and being a fairly recent graduate myself, I saw this as a prime opportunity to give back to the younger ones and the wider community. I am happy that our input means that the school now gets even greater value out of CFL’s $10,000 contribution by undertaking two projects,” noted Elibox, Managing Director of Blueprint Construction Limited.