Archive for July 31st, 2014

Junior swimmers head for Championships

Junior swimmers head for Championships

| 31/07/2014 | 2 Comments

(CIASA): As the Commonwealth Games’ swimming competition draws to an end, 10 of Cayman’s Junior Representative Team swimmers are preparing to compete in the 2014 Southern Zone Senior Long Course Championships in Fort Myers, Florida this week. The swimmers left on Sunday morning and were training in the 50m pool at the Florida Gulf Coast University Aquatic Centre on Monday, in preparation for the Championships which started on Tuesday, 29 July. Representing the Cayman Islands are: Jonathan Key, Samantha Bailey, John Bodden, Matthew Courtis, Wunyae Crawford, Alison Jackson, Sarah Jackson, Iain McCallum, Cole Morgan, Zororo Mutomba and Ella Plunkett.

“This is a Cayman Islands Amateur Swimming Association (CIASA) sanctioned overseas meet for our Junior Swimmers,” said Technical Director Bailey Weathers. “Following CARIFTA, I met with swim club coaches who agreed that our swimmers need to have opportunities to participate more frequently in competitive; prelim-finals swim meets. We found this meet and it was a perfect fit. The times are fast, the competition will be strong and our swimmers will be able to work on their race preparation and execution as well as getting in and swimming as fast as they can.”

The Cayman team is coached by Coaches Brad Hutton and Andy Copley and the Team Manager is Coach Marie Shepheard. The meet: 2014 Southern Zone Senior LC Championships is available on Meet Mobile (you can download the app for free) and follow the team as they represent Cayman.

Not to be outdone by the Junior Swimmers, Cayman’s Masters are also heading off to another CIASA sanctioned swim championship. They are taking part in the 15th FINA World Masters Championships, August 2-10th in Montreal, Canada. These championships are held every two years and the group from Cayman: Michelle Bailey, William Balderamos,  Lee-Anne Corin, Kim Eckart and Elliot Smith, look forward to racing against some of the worlds’ best Masters Swimmers.

“We are so happy that Cayman Swimming will be represented in Montreal,” said CIASA President Michael Lockwood, “With two years until the next competition I might start some serious training again myself … but in the meantime it is great to see so much happening with swimming this summer. From the government swimming camps at the Lions Pool with Coach Ryan Mushin, to overseas competitive age group swim meets, Cayman representative teams in Ft. Myers and Montreal and of course the stellar swims produced by our swimmers at the Commonwealth Games, there is no doubt that Cayman Swimming is growing from strength to strength and I am already looking forward to the upcoming swim season.”

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Babies’ survival and health depends on breastfeeding

Babies’ survival and health depends on breastfeeding

| 31/07/2014 | 0 Comments

(CNS): As health officials prepare to mark the 22nd annual World Breastfeeding Week they are reminding mums and mums to be of the numerous benefits and protections offered by feeding babies as nature intended. This year's theme focuses on increasing and sustaining the protection, promotion and support of breastfeeding to meet the United Nations Millennium Development Goals to reduce child mortality and improve maternal health. Breastfeeding can improve child survival by about 20% experts say, and as well as improving newborn care it reduces neonatal mortality, which contributes to the majority of infant deaths. In short, it has been shown repeatedly to be the single most effective way to prevent infant death.

But aside from keeping babies alive it plays a major role in a child's health and development, and significantly benefits the health of mothers.

Simone Sheehan, the HSA's Dietician, is heading up the initiatives in Cayman to mark the week which starts on 1 August, including a booth at the hospital, in conjunction with the Women’s Health Centre and the Cayman Islands Breastfeeding Support Group.

“We will have HSA midwives and Public Health Nurses available at the booth to hand out information and to answer any questions about breastfeeding,” Ms Sheehan said.  “This year’s theme is Breastfeeding: A Winning Goal for Life with the purpose of increasing awareness and the many benefits to breastfeeding. When mothers are able, we encourage breastfeeding as the first option over formula, as there are many health benefits for both the mother and the baby,” Sheehan said, adding that it helps build a strong bond between mother and child.

The Cayman Islands Breastfeeding Support Group is also a stakeholder in this initiative offering on-going support for breastfeeding mothers in the local community.

Annie Mae Roffey, a volunteer at the Breastfeeding Support Group, said she is looking forward to this year’s activities scheduled throughout the week.  “In addition to the informational booth, we will be hosting a Breastfeeding Café social event which is open to the public and specifically mothers who are breastfeeding fathers and their babies,” she said.

The Breastfeeding Café will be held at the Family Resource Centre [located in the Cayman Compass Centre, Shedden Road] on Monday August 4th from 12 noon until 2pm.

“This is a great opportunity for breastfeeding mothers to get together and discuss their personal experiences and exchange ideas,” .Roffey said.  “The Family Resource Centre also has a breastfeeding room with an electric pump available to mothers who may need a private place to feed or pump, which is convenient for working mothers who need some privacy during the workday.”

The world breast feeding week was originally launched by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA).  The Cayman Islands Health Services Authority (HSA) will be observing the week from 1-7 august and the information booth is located in the Atrium of the Cayman Islands Hospital and wil be open from 9:30am – 10:30am.

For more information about World Breastfeeding Week, visit or

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Cops & Customs eye containers for stolen loot

Cops & Customs eye containers for stolen loot

| 31/07/2014 | 28 Comments

(CNS): As part of a joint operation between the RCIPS and the customs department, currently underway, officers have been targeting containers looking for stolen goods. During the pro-active targetted initiative called ‘Operation Spearfish’ the law enforcement team removed and detained two containers from the Windsor Park area in George Town on suspicion of containing property,  on Wednesday, (30 July) that may have been taken in various break-ins around Grand Cayman. The containers were taken to the Cargo Distribution Centre in the capital and officials are now examining the contents and comparing them with lists of stolen items reported to the police.

The ongoing investigation is on the look-out for stolen items from various burglaries, robberies and thefts which police and customs officers believe are being exported concealed in shipping containers. As well as the two containers detained yesterday, the investigation has already resulted in the detention of four shipping containers on suspicion of exporting stolen goods before they could leave the island.

The investigations are ongoing and there was no indication yet of any arrests in connection with the joint operation.

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Haines takes another marathon in his stride

Haines takes another marathon in his stride

| 31/07/2014 | 9 Comments

(CNS): In an amazing performance Derek Haines stormed to the finish line at the San Francisco marathon on Sunday in a fraction over four hours. The veteran runner has now pounded the pavement in four different cities in order to raise $1million for the local hospice charity to help them build a much needed inpatient facility. Following the fourth of his targeted six marathons in one year, Haines now has over $640,000 pledged towards the target. With the Dublin marathon in October and the home run in Cayman in December, what was a hefty looking target for the charity at the beginning of the year is looking more and more possible, as Haines at 65 years of age is tackling the marathons with style.

Speaking about the weekend run, Haines told CNS that it went very well and he was pleased with his time of 04:00:42, which he said was down to a fast second half.

"It is a picturesque course, although hilly, with great views including running over and back across the Golden Gate Bridge. The weather was perfect so that helped a great deal also. Rotary Club of Grand Cayman President Brian Hurley and Rotarian Tim Bradley ran creditable half marathons and it was great to have them and Tim's family there in support," Haines said. "The marathon and half marathon entries were completely full so there was a big field of runners. I finished in the top 25% and was 6th in my age group," he added.

Having met up with an old friend from the Cayman Islands who now lives in San Francisco, while he was in the City, Haines said he was taken on a boating tour of the Bay on Monday and his friend handed over another CI$1K for the challenge.

In addition, Haines said, just this week he was handed another generous donation from some local businessmen, who wish to remain anonymous, of US$25K.

"This is excellent news and brings the total pledged/donated to about CI$640K," the veteran runner said. "I wish to thank all of those who are supporting the cause. It really is tremendous how the Cayman community have responded to this challenge."

Anyone wishing to pledge towards the cause can visit to find out how and more about Haines' amazing marathon challenge  

Photo: Ciara Bradley, Tim Bradley, Derek Haines, Brian Hurley, Kayla Bradley. Photo by Traci Bradley

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Charities OK despite economy

Charities OK despite economy

| 31/07/2014 | 24 Comments

(CNS): Despite the downturn in the world economy over the past six years, some charities in the Cayman Islands are thriving. Apart from community spirit and corporate citizenship, certain factors seem to determine whether charities do well in Cayman, with the overwhelming cause for donor loyalty is a relationship to the cause. For instance, cancer charities reported seeing an increase in funding and donations during the past several years and Victoria Grey of the Cancer Society beleives this is because everyone knows of someone or has been directly affected by cancer.

“As it relates to donations, we cannot say that we have seen a drop and actually we find that more people are donating. Having said that, I really do feel it is because of the cause,” she said. She explained that in her opinion the public is responding to the disease and its indiscriminate onslaught on humanity in recent times.

“Just as an example, with regard to how people are being affected, in the last five or six months, we have been seeing younger and younger patients, especially with breast cancer. And it seems the younger the person, the more aggressive the cancer.”

She pointed out that it has become more important than ever to get screening, which costs roughly $150 and explained that some donations are used to avail less fortunate people of these kinds of opportunities.

“When we receive donations, some come with specific instructions. The rest we use to offer pap smear, prostate and stool screening, as well as mammograms to individuals with little to no insurance. There are certain requirements to qualify though and some are undisclosed so that these programmes are not abused.”

At Meals-on-Wheels, which has been serving the indigent and bed-ridden in Cayman for over 17 years, the story was also encouraging, as Beulah McField shared what the last nine months have been like: “I must tell you that last year we were close to closing our doors in September. We were really wondering but in the midst of that, we found that what we were really having was a PR issue because once people knew that we were struggling, the support was overwhelming.”

McField said she felt the operation was now at a place where they could operate with peace-of-mind.

“We have been able to increase our operation’s capacity, as well as improve our facilities in the midst of hardship,” she said, adding that the organization also has a new Board, with new ideas and they are communicating with new people all the time.

“Charity is essential to society’s dignity,” noted McField, who added that it is important to remember those less fortunate and not to assume that a charity is doing well and can do without your support.

At the Rotary Central of Grand Cayman, the story was similar. Immediate Past President Noude Dreyer said, “We are very fortunate in that we have two well established sources of fund raising. The first is the Music Extravaganza, which has taken place for over 18 years now and the public – thankfully – have always supported, though this year, I must say, was the first time we had a little downturn in ticket sales. However, we still cannot complain.”

The other project Rotary Central is responsible for that helps the charities bottom line each year are the bus shelters, which give shelter to commuters on public transport and depict various advertisements for revenue.

“We can continue our work as a result of these two things. In fact, recently we won the two top awards for service in District 720, which includes 10 other countries such as Haiti, Jamaica, BVI and St. Maarten; and that was partly as a result of our fundraising, which in turn allowed us to support many projects,” he said. Dreyer indicated that he was aware, however, that some clubs were having trouble.

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