Couples Resorts' repeat guest, Lilliane Bastien, a teacher at the Pierrefonds Comprehensive High School in Montreal, Canada, spent the last few months organising a toy and book drive by her students and their families. What began as a small project quickly blossomed into an incredible story of love and commitment by children moved to help others less fortunate in another country which culminated in over 100 boxes of books, toys and, school and medical supplies being collected for shipment to Jamaica.
The story caught the attention of Montreal's number-one English television station, CTV, and one of their top news reporters, Maya Johnson, whose parents are Jamaican, visited one of the schools in St Mary earmarked to receive some of the items. The story aired in June and received very positive feedback.
With the help of the Issa Trust Foundation, the non-profit arm of Couples Resorts, the Ministry of Health, Air Canada Cargo, Ikea Canada, and Chapters/Indigo retail bookstore, the items finally made their way to Jamaica for distribution to various hospitals and schools through the Issa Trust Foundation.
Two weeks ago, Lilliane and her partner, Frank Litschauer, along with Issa Trust Foundation representatives Paul Issa, chairman; Diane Pollard, president; Dr Pat Brophy, medical director and Alexandra Ghisays, public relations director made a courtesy visit to King's House to present Governor General Sir Patrick Allen, patron of the Issa Trust Foundation, and Lady Allen, with a gift of 15 boxes of the donated books and toys to assist Lady Allen's Christmas donations to hospitals and clinics.
The Issa Trust Foundation was established in 2005 by Couples Resorts as a non-profit organisation. The mission of the foundation is to provide a system of prevention, health promotion and education, community health improvement, and other services to promote well-being and development of the people of Jamaica.
What began as a small project blossomed into an incredible story of love and commitment by children ...