The Queen’s College of Guyana Alumni Association (NY), Inc. (“QCAANY”) will spread Christmas cheer during a Day of Giving and Celebrating at Calvary’s Mission Food Pantry in Richmond Hill, where volunteers will help to distribute food to the community at 7 am on Dec. 9.
The executive is inviting the community to share in the festive Day of Giving that will culminate with an appreciation Christmas party, to say thanks to the community that supported the organization over the past year. The event will be held at Guiding Light Cocktail Lounge in Jamaica, Queens, at 7 pm.
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Karen Wharton, president of the QCAANY in a statement to Caribbean Life, said that the up-coming Day of Giving and Celebrating further embraces the QCAANY’s role within the community.
She noted that QCAANY is collaborating with Calvary’s Mission Food Pantry and its Guyanese-American President Tony Singh to provide families with needed food supplies. The association chose Calvary’s Mission Food Pantry because of Calvary’s history of providing help to the working poor within the Richmond Hill community.
“Calvary’s Mission is one of the largest food pantries in Queens, distributing over three million pounds of food each year to working families within our community,” said Wharton. “We feel compelled to aid in whatever ways we can, particularly at this time of year, and hopes that the community joins us in supporting Calvary’s mission.”
Lead organizer of Day of Giving and Celebrating, Sherrilyn McPherson, noted that she is excited to create more opportunities to engage the community. “Our school’s motto is ‘Faithful and Useful Everywhere.’ Working with Calvary’s gives us the opportunity to connect with various members of our community in ways that are beneficial and to all,” she said. McPherson said this type of community engagement will continue to be a vital part of QCAANY.
With a focus on rehabilitating and revitalizing Queen’s College of Guyana, QCAANY held its first meeting in Brooklyn on Aug. 21, 1991. Since then, the association has made several pivotal contributions to the school with recent offerings centered largely on supporting the development of social and academic skills of students. The efforts included the annual student conferences that reach about 200 students from Queen’s College and other Georgetown schools each year; an annual summer mathematics program to inspire students to pursue STEM careers and donations to language immersion trips for students.
The association also engages in activities that enhance the social and economic welfare of Queen’s College alumni, both in Guyana and overseas, and Guyanese in general. One recent event focused on promoting artists of Guyanese heritage through the Liminal Space Exhibition at the Caribbean Culture Center African Diaspora Institute in Harlem, New York. QCAANY member Grace Ali curated the exhibition and among the 12 featured artists were former Queen’s College art instructors Stanley Greaves and the late Donald Locke. The success of the exhibition has led the association to include a creative arts component in its upcoming Feb. 8 - 9, 2018 student conference in Guyana with an eye toward strengthening the creative arts program in the school.