Jamaican cricketer supports blind Jamaicans

West Indies’ Marlon Samuels shoots a six off Pakistan’s Abdur Rehman on the second day of their second cricket Test match in Basseterre, St. Kitts.
Associated Press / Andres Leighton

West Indies middle-order batsman Marlon Samuels has donated Jam$1.5 million (US$11,700) to the Jamaica Society for the Blind.

The announcement was made at a press conference recently in Kingston where it was also revealed that Samuels, through his foundation, would also disburse a further J$350,000 to Garfield Mitchell, 23, a visually impaired student of the Church Teachers College.

The veteran all-rounder said he started this foundation because “I am always somebody that gives back wherever I can.”

“The first year I spent a million and I asked Digicel to help and they did, the second year I spent another million and asked Lime (FLOW) and they helped me a lot and the third year, I did the party and asked everybody to donate to the foundation,” he added.

Samuels, who played 71 Tests, 187 One-Day International and 55 Twenty20s for the West Indies, said he embarked on the sponsorship with the Jamaica Society for the Blind following an incident four years ago in Australia when he was struck by a delivery van in the face and sustained a fractured eye socket.

He remained partially blind for two weeks before undergoing surgery and afterwards pledged support for the blind in Jamaica once recovered.

WICB President Dave Cameron, former Prime Minister Portia Simpson-Miller and Sports Minister Olivia Grande attended the newsconference.

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