Cayman offers helping hand

| 07/04/2009

(CNS): Children in Jamaica living with HIV/AIDS were dealt another blow to their young lives when their home was destroyed by fire on Monday, 16 March. However, after a plea from Father Gregory Ramkissoon, the founder of charitable organisation Mustard Seed Communities, a container in Grand Cayman has been filled with toys, clothes shoes, bedding, and many other essentials and will soon be leaving for Jamaica.

Fortunately, none of the thirty children living at Martha’s House, one of the Mustardseed homes for children, was hurt, though two employees suffered injuries while rescuing the children. According to Father Ramkissoon, a caregiver, Dawn Mansfield, broke her leg while jumping through a window with two of the children and is currently hospitalized. A security guard was treated for minor burns to his legs and hands.

However, the damage was estimated at $15 million and neither the building on North Street downtown Kingston nor its contents were insured. Responding to the needs of these children, the Catholic Church on Grand Cayman, which was approached by Father Ramkissoon through some parishioners here, and local charity, the I AM CO Foundation, agreed to finance the container to take donations to Jamaica next week. Donations are being received up to Wednesday, 8 April, at 535 South Church Street between Pure Art and the Montessori school of Cayman, and the Jamaican Consulate will accept goods at their offices. Anyone wishing to donate can email Bron at or contact the Jamaican Consulate office between 8:30-2:30 Monday through Friday.

Items needed are: used clothing sizes 2 to 16, small toys, shoes, towels, sheets, shampoos ointments, toothpaste, soaps, crayons, plates, cups or canned meat, etc.

The children have been relocated to Dare to Care and Matthew 25:40, temporarily, until the charity is able to build a new home for them. According to Father Ramkissoon, they are trying to settle in their new environment and are receiving counseling after having watched their home being destroyed by fire. “We have done everything to assure them that they will always have shelter and food and will not be abandoned a second time,” he said in an appeals letter.

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  1. someone says:

    Also Ana Chisholm who lives at #63 Webster Drive (big yellow house on your left)  is also home taking offers from people.