CIBC FirstCaribbean helping make life easier for cancer patients & families of inmates

Life is being made a little easier for patients dealing with the effects of blood cancers as well as the families impacted by the incarceration of their loved ones thanks to recent donations by CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank.

The Myeloma Lymphoma and Leukaemia Foundation of Barbados, and Prison Fellowship received monies for their respective programmes to assist those in need in a brief presentation at the bank’s Rendezvous offices.

myeloma foundation

Michelle Whitelaw, Director, Retail Banking Channels, CIBC FirstCaribbean (left) presents Hyacinth Grimes, President of the Myeloma Lymphoma and Leukaemia Foundation and members Yvonne Archer and Saritri Richmond with funds to assist patients dealing with blood cancers.

President of the Myeloma, Lymphoma and Leukaemia Foundation, Hyacinth Grimes explained that the foundation’s role was to educate the public about these illnesses as well as to provide financial assistance for patients. “We also visit the haematological clinic at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital twice a week to offer patients encouragement,” Ms. Grimes added.

The foundation held its annual fund-raising tea party on November 1 and the monies raised as well as the donation from the bank are being used to assist patients. “The tea party is one of our major fundraisers and all the funds received have gone towards assisting patients, financially or otherwise, such as sending specimens overseas and providing toiletries,” the foundation president said.

Ms. Grimes added that the bank’s gesture was greatly welcomed. “The bank’s donation will have a tremendous impact. It helps us to help those in need and we appreciate it tremendously.”

The Angel Tree programme of Prison Fellowship provides support for families of prison inmates at Christmas with hampers as well as a Christmas party at HMP Dodds, held for the first time last year. The bank has supported the programme since its inception in 1992. Prison Fellowship’s Thomas Watts, a former awardee in the bank’s Unsung Heroes programme, said the organisation is hoping to prepare between 350 and 400 hampers this year especially with more donors coming on board. The bank’s contribution will assist in the preparation of about 30 hampers, he said.

prison fellowship

Thomas Watts of Prison Fellowship receives funds from Michelle Whitelaw, Director, Retail Banking Channels, CIBC FirstCaribbean for hampers for the fellowship’s Angel Tree Christmas outreach.

In thanking CIBC FirstCaribbean Mr. Watts said, “The bank’s continued support is marvelous and if we were supported as well as the bank supports us we’d do well every year. The bank has supported us from the beginning; every year the contribution gets bigger. I’m proud to be dealing with a bank like that.”

The work of Prison Fellowship will continue into the New Year through, for example, assistance with back to school items for children. As a result of its ongoing work, contributions are needed throughout the year.

CIBC FirstCaribbean Managing Director, Barbados Donna Wellington said: “We continue to support the work of the Prison Fellowship and the Myeloma Lymphoma and Leukaemia Foundation of Barbados because of the meaningful and long-term impact they make on the lives of families. We are our brother’s keeper and our involvement in the communities we serve reinforces this.”

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