Teaming up with a Grenadian-born member, a Vincentian philanthropic group in the Bronx recently conducted what members described as a very successful mission to Grenada.
The St. Matthias Charities, Inc., headed by Pastor Robert McBarnett, has just returned from the “Spice Isle,” where members distributed a variety of medical and other supplies to the local hospital, clinics and various communities throughout Grenada and its sister isle, Carriacou.
On the trip was Hannah Reid, who three years ago, when the group was formed, became a member and, subsequently, accompanied St. Matthias Charities, Inc. on two similar missions to St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
In return, the philanthropic group pledged to reciprocate by collaborating with Reid and her Brooklyn church, Crown Heights Gospel Church, to conduct a mission in Grenada.
“Needless to say, we kept our promise; and, on June 28, we were in Grenada, along with Pastor Cyprian Joseph and members of Crown Heights Gospel Church,” McBarnett told Caribbean Life.
With help from the Brooklyn-based Square Deal Shippers & Movers, McBarnette said St. Matthias, Inc. shipped 39 boxes, including commercial boxes and crates, of medical equipment and other supplies to Grenada. These comprised, among others, crutches, walkers, wheelchairs, bath chairs, canes, dishes, food, clothing and household items.
“The mission was a complete success,” Mc Barnett said. “We worked with the government of Grenada, which, instructed local personnel to clear and store the shipment of supplies for us.”
“Upon our arrival, everything was ready to be handed over and distributed to the hospital and various communities,” he added, thanking for support particularly Minister for Health Nicholas Steele; Steele’s advisor, Ann David-Antoine; Javan Williams, coordinator of the donation desk; and New York-based Ambassador of Diaspora Affairs, Derrick James.
“The donations were received with gratitude from the government and all of the citizens of the communities that we visited,” said Mc Barnett, disclosing that donations were also made to the Hilarion Chestshire Home; Hills View Home for the Aged and Richmond Hill Nursing Homes; Grand Anse Baptist Church; and The International Pentecostal Church (IPA).
“It was good to see the faces of the people we helped, such as Ms. Norma Richards, who has an amputated leg,” Mc Barnett continued. “We donated a wheelchair and pampers to her. She cried – tears of joy – almost as if she had been absolved of all the pain and had been given the opportunity to start again.
“This is why we do what we do – to change the lives of those we meet on our journey, even if it is only one life at a time,” he said. “We thank our supporters for their continuous dedication to our cause.”
As St. Matthias Charities, Inc. prepares for its fourth mission to St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Mc Barnett said the group will hold its annual fund-raising BBQ on Aug. 22, from 5 – 9 pm., at the Friends of Crown Heights Educational Center, 1435 Prospect Place, Brooklyn.
Mc Barnett can be reached at (929) 265-9872 or at stmat