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HELEN Astarita and her husband, Ben, came to the Bahamas quite by accident more than 50 years ago. But her extraordinary donation of $400,000 to the College of the Bahamas' School of Communication and Creative Arts to support budding artists in a thriving art programme is anything but happenstance.
The largest single gift to the college specifically directed toward funding the study of art, this recent gift is deliberate; a tangible means of helping young, brilliant artists who want to fuel their passions while earning a higher education degree in art.
COB said the $400,000 gift will be used to establish the Astarita Art Endowment to fund two merit based scholarships - the Astarita Nassauvian ...
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NASSAU, Bahamas -- Scholastic books flooded the campus of Claridge Primary School as the Member of Parliament for the Marathon Constituency chose to give the gift of reading this holiday season. "As Minister of Education, I realized that the best gift I could give this holiday season would be related to promoting education. Last year, I donated toys to the children, but this year, I wanted to give something more tangible something that I know could have a lasting impact and remain relevant even beyond the holiday season."
Claridge Primary is the only primary school in the Marathon Constituency and so they have been privileged to receive many much needed items from their Member of Parliament. The Minister used the resources available in his ministry and engaged the expertise of educators to ensure that the books were appropriate for the ages and reading levels of the students.
Mrs. Eulease Beneby, Northeastern District Superintendent, Dr. Francina Thurston, Ministry of Education Consultant and other education officials along with residents from the Marathon Constituency and parents were present for the special assembly.
The students listened intently as the Minister spoke and he engaged them throughout his remarks. He opened by saying "I am here to deliver goodies to you today. How many of you like to read?" All hands shot up and the Minister observed that some children had both hands in the air.
To emphasize the importance of reading, the Minister told them of his love for reading; "as a child, I loved to read and even now, I still enjoy reading a good book. I visited many countries through the books I read; experienced many fun and exciting adventures through different characters and events and I discovered lots of new things, simply by reading. Best of all, reading allowed my imagination to run wild. I remember reading the classics: Hardy Boys, Huckleberry Finn, The Red Badge of Courage, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory and lots of others. I remember enjoying a book so much that I took it everywhere I went and never wanted to put it down until I was finished."
Opposition Leader Perry Christie said yesterday the handover of the new Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium to The Bahamas government represents the fulfillment of a promise he made to the youth of the nation more than seven years ago.
The People's Republic of China turned over the $30 million stadium to the government on Wednesday. Chines Ambassador to The Bahamas Hu Shan visited Christie's downtown office yesterday to officially thank him and the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) for the role they played in bringing the project to fruition.
Christie, who is a former long jumper, told Ambassador Hu that he wished he would have had the opportunity to jump in such a magnificent" stadium.
"I want to add my thanks to the Chinese and the people of China for this extraordinary gift," Christie said. The 15,000-seat facility sits on more than 450 acres of land that will be further developed to enhance the world-class stadium.
On Wednesday evening, Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham was handed the key to the future site of an International Association of Athletic Federations (IAAF) and International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) certified facility.
The handover took place about two years after the stadium project started. Christie said when his government began negotiations with the Chinese for the stadium, it was under the premise that the facility would be built for the youth.
"My sole interest was to provide a gift and legacy for the young people of our country," he said.Christie also thanked the ambassador for the design changes he requested which allow the facility to act as a hurricane shelter.
"I am pleased with what I saw. It is exactly as I envisaged it when I made my state visit to China in 2004," Christie added.
Ambassador Hu, through a Chinese interpreter, also thanked Christie.
The government recently signed contracts to develop the land surrounding the stadium. The complete transformation of the complex will take about a year, according to officials.
Improvements to the roads and changes to some facilities will take place.
In April the government signed a $48.5 million contract with two Bahamian companies for the Queen Elizabeth Sports Centre Redevelopment Project, an undertaking that is expected to catapult New Providence into a premier sports tourism destination.
The project is separate from the stadium.
FREEPORT, Grand Bahama -- In keeping with its commitment to give back to the community, Statoil South Riding Point, which has been operating in Eastern Grand Bahama for 40 years, reached out once again to the GB Children's Home with a special donation from the staff.
Staff members from Statoil South Riding Point took the call to give back to the community personally and came up with a special donation of a 42" flat screen TV with built-in DVD player - providing for wonderful entertainment for years to come for the children. "At Statoil South Riding Point, we believe in giving back to our community and we wanted to give the children something special that they could use and really enjoy," explained Mr. Michael Regis, (Warehouse Assistant for Procurement and Logistics), who presented the Home with the gift along with Mr. Julian Fox (Welder, Statoil's Maintenance & Modification Department) and Mr. Bartholomew Mitchell (Coordinator SSU for Statoil's Safety & Security Unit). All three men are also instructors for the Smith System Driver Improvement Course for Statoil South Riding Point Employees.
The 42" flat screen TV/DVD combination will provide for wholesome entertainment and educational opportunities for the children who have already made good use of the donation. "We really wish to thank Statoil, its management and employees who have supported us in many ways," said Mrs. Geneva Rutherford, GB Children's Home Executive Committee. "This is such a special donation for the children - knowing that it is something they will be enjoying... watching movies, educational programmes and DVDs. We are very grateful that this group of exceptionally trained professionals from Statoil considered us and gave such a thoughtful gift for the children to enjoy for a long time to come," she added.
Freeport, Bahamas -
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Freeport, Bahamas - Braving the cold on Tuesday morning youngsters
waited on the Santa Clause brought in by the Florida Caribbean Cruise
Association for their 15th Annual Gift Presentation at the International
Bazaar, with members of the Ministry of Tourism.
Bishop Ricardo Grant prayed during the ceremony before the gift giving,
while the Jr. Minister of Tourism, Winnae Hunt gave the welcome and Mary
Cooper, Director, Ministry of Education gave remarks thanking the FCCA for their
We've celebrated the mothers, now it's time for father's to be paid their due. With less than a week to Father's Day, you're probably pondering what to get the special man in your life especially as you got him soap-on-rope last year, a tie the year before that and crabs the year before that, so you're mulling between maybe a bottle of cologne or the latest gadget. But this year, why not opt to give the special dad in your life the gift of health? This Father's Day what better way to say you love your dad than to take him for an annual physical which will not only be good for his health but ensure that he will be in your life strong and vibrant for years to come.
Ensuring your dad is on top of his health is a timely gift to undertake as men tend to shy away from the doctor's office if they have a choice in the matter, says Dr. Patrick Whitfield, a family medicine practitioner who operates out of Oxford Medical Center.
"It is important to encourage all persons, but men in particular, to get a regular check-up so that a medical professional can assess risks for common conditions that develop among the population," says the doctor. "Although many men may feel that there is nothing wrong with them and delay visiting a physician for as long as possible, in the medical field we practice preventative health which means we like to examine patients before they get sick so that early signs of conditions are picked up. This will in turn ensure that illnesses aren't prolonged or progress too far before treatment is sought. It is very important to get men more aware of their health and well-being because not only in The Bahamas, but universally men live seven to eight years less than their female counterparts and this does not have to be".
The family medicine specialist says that as a loving family member urging your father, no matter his age, to see the family doctor is one of the best ways to show him that you love him. As you will want to see your dad around for many years to come, Dr. Whitfield says helping him take care of his health now is a good gesture to give your dad for Father's Day. But he says when your father makes his doctor visit there are certain things that he should be checked for depending on his age. The doctor said men are screened for illnesses based on their age. He says there are illnesses that are more prevalent in certain decades of life, and that the doctor assesses what he considers are your dad's needs and risk levels, and screens for them.
Men in their 20s and 30s
"This age group is low on the scale for most illnesses so their screening tends to be more so to assess their risk factors due to lifestyle habits and guide them on ways to avoid problems due to lifestyle choices. Men in their 20s don't commonly suffer from things like cancers, heart attacks and strokes, so looking for early signs for these things aren't usually prioritized much in screenings. What you can expect in a screening at this age is a basic full body physical to ensure nothing obvious is wrong physically. Other things like blood pressure, cholesterol and body mass index [BMI] are also checked. It is also important at every age on an annual basis that blood tests for sexually transmitted illnesses are also taken. Your doctor should also take his time to sit and talk about family health history and the normal practices of the patient to further assess risk factors for common illnesses developing in the future so preventative measures can be taken while [your father] is still young."
As long as there are no ongoing health issues or high risk for certain illnesses due to genetics and family history, men, he says, are likely to only have to undergo simple physicals and blood screenings until their 40s when the likelihood of developing certain conditions greatly increases.
Men in their 40s
"While more intense physicals that are undergone more often tend to occur after you are 40 [years of age], it is important not to believe that this means while men are young that they shouldn't be taking care of their health. What happens later in life is greatly determined on how you take care of yourself while young. So simple things like wearing seatbelts to avoid harm in case of a car crash, amount of alcohol consumption, choices of coping mechanisms for dealing with stress, amount of sleep you get at night, and eating and exercising habits are important factors to determine how healthy you are in the years when the likelihood of common lifestyle illnesses developing increases. So even if your father has lived a good life in his youth and is relatively healthy by the age of 40, in addition to the annual physical and blood testing he should still start his screening for cancers of the prostate and colon. If he starts screening at this age any early signs of cancers developing can be caught and treated to avoid greater problems later in life."
Men in their 50s and 60s
In his 50s and into his 60s, your father will continue to have heightened physical examines by his physician, especially as it relates to weight management, blood pressure and cholesterol levels. It is during these years when things like heart attacks, strokes and other ailments are more likely to occur says the doctor.
He also says most people tend to overlook updating their immunizations. Dr. Whitfield says it is becoming more common to see older persons suffering from common childhood ailments like chicken pox. To avoid contracting any of those childhood diseases, he said to let your family physician readminister all immunization shots every few years as required.
Men in their 70s, 80s, 90s and beyond
When your dad is in his 70s, in addition to regular check-ups and screenings it is important to have your father checked for ailments such as glaucoma and cataracts if he is diabetic or complains about visual problems. A hearing exam among other tests may also be recommended depending on the growing needs of the patient.
"At the end of the day, screenings are personal due to the needs of the patient and we as physicians can only determine what is needed once the patient comes to us," says the family medicine practitioner. "It is important to get patients to come to see the doctor before they feel ill so that if anything can be done to prevent conditions from developing they are done in time. It is better to prevent than to cure and men need good health just as much as anyone else. So help the men in your life to take care of themselves now so they won't have to worry about it later," says Dr. Whitfield.