Thu | Aug 24, 2017

Dave Robinson extends his fatherly reach

Published:Thursday | March 30, 2017 | 3:00 AMCecelia Campbell Livingston
Dave Robinson and little Monefa Armstrong.

MAY PEN, Clarendon:

Sagicor's May Pen personal banking officer Dave Robinson is ensuring that he mentors as many children as he can - giving them what he missed out on.

Growing up without a father's influence and now a father of three, himself, Robinson said he makes it his duty to positively impact at risk youth in the volatile communities.

"I have been reaching out to youth in communities such as Jack Monday, Duke Street and my latest Effortville," Robinson told Rural Xpress.

A member of the May Pen Open Bible Church, Robinson through their men's department - Men of Vision outreach group has been involved in mentoring for some time now.

"We target those in the troubled communities through this medium because we want to show them that there is a better way," he said, sharing that four of those boys the group spent time with are now gainfully employed and their lives totally transformed.

Robinson added: "We seek to mentor them in the volatile community through that media and show them that there is a better life out of those four - they are now working, they have totally transformed their lives."

He said some people would think he is taking a great risk going into these areas and reaching out in this manner - but for him it is a privilege.

"Honestly, I am not afraid, I have been around volatile areas and it's just a stigma - you have real people, dealing with real issues. You can't live fearful. If you are passionate about something, you will do it," he said.

Robinson has now stretched his mentorship to fully sponsoring a bright grade two student at Effortville Primary School - Monefa Armstrong, whose plight was brought to him by Otis James of James and Friends Education Programme.

"Her father died and she was badly in need of assistance, she really touched my heart," he said. He has now taken on the task to fully fund her schooling ensuring she has lunch and school supplies.

 

COMMUNITY STIGMA

 

Robinson - a husband of 12 years said he would love to see more persons willing to look beyond the community's stigma and try to help the youth as he said that is the only way they will be able to change their future and make a difference in the country.

"I work in a bank, but I'm not going to lock myself away. They are normal people who need someone who can encourage them and let them see there's more to life than all the stigmas attached to the community," he said.

Speaking of his new 'ward' he said she has really grown on him and in his interactions with her, he realised she just needed someone to guide her," he said.

Born in Kemps Hill, Race Course, he is a past student of Glenmuir High School and has been working at Sagicor for the last 17 years.

rural@gleanerjm.com