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Sagicor gives back in 45 ways

Published:Monday | November 23, 2015 | 12:00 AMKeisha Hill
Jacqueline Donaldson, assistant vice president, group human resources, presents Ajani Miller with a cheque to purchase a new wheelchair during Sagicor’s #45WaysToGiveBack ceremony held on Thursday, November 19.
Kevin Parkinson (centre) was one of the recipients at the Sagicor’s #45WaysToGiveBack ceremony. Kevin received a Harpenden physiotherapy osteopathic brace to assist with walking. His mother, Jessica Melhado, and R. Danny Williams, chairman, Sagicor Group Jamaica Limited and Sagicor Foundation, share the happy moment.

KEVIN PARKINSON, nine years old, needed a bilateral Perthes brace. Although he was born normal, he began walking abnormally.

After X-rays of his knee, doctors were unable to determine his medical condition.

It wasn’t after Parkinson began to tether to his left side that X-rays showed his hips were not properly formed, and he needed a brace to keep the weight off them. His mother, Jessica Melhado, was devastated.

Having been left single following the death of his father before he was born, Melhado could not afford to purchase the brace.

After months of wearing a makeshift brace, thanks to Sagicor Group Life Jamaica, Parkinson received the full amount for his hip-abduction brace through the company’s 45th anniversary initiative #45WaysToGiveBack.

“I feel so happy,” said Parkinson, a grade-three student at Waterford Primary School. “I know I will get better and thanks to Sagicor, I will be getting the brace,” he said. Parkinson was among 45 individuals, charity groups, communities and institutions that benefited from the #45WaysToGiveBack initiative.

The initiative gave Jamaicans the opportunity to send in nominations for projects. The recipients were selected by a panel and only clients and children of Sagicor Group Jamaica and its subsidiaries were selected to receive assistance.

The #45WaysToGiveBack initiative kicked off with the first recipient, Golden Age Home, Cluster A, receiving a cheque for $300,000. Other recipients included Pembroke Hall Primary, considered to be the best all-island junior choir; receiving much-needed musical equipment. Mount Olivet Boys Home in Manchester received assistance towards a roof guttering.

“I am feeling great,” said young Ajani Miller, who received the full cost for a hip, knee, ankle surgery. The William Knibb High School student is optimistic the surgery will be successful and will give him an opportunity to walk.