Tue | Jul 27, 2021

Beecher Town residents get free health services

Published:Tuesday | July 30, 2019 | 12:00 AMCarl Gilchrist/Gleaner Writer
Sidney Brown, director of finance, Beecher Town Give Back Association.
A doctor checks a patient during the Beecher Town Give Back Association's health fair.

Scores of residents turned out to access free health services last Thursday and Friday during the Beecher Town Give Back Association’s (BTGBA) biennial trip to Jamaica to serve residents of Beecher Town and neighbouring communities in St Ann.

The services offered included tests for blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, body mass index, haemoglobin, Pap smear, and optical, courtesy of Courts Optical.

Maureen Byefield, community development officer for the Social Development Commission (SDC),which helped with organising the event, said the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, the National Health Fund, Heart Foundation of Jamaica, Courts Optical, and nursing students from Brown’s Town Community College, assisted by staff from the Ocho Rios Health Clinic, all turned out to support the BTGBA event.

Community members, including a scholarship recipient, expressed delight that the BTGBA, made up of former residents of the community who now reside overseas, continues to give back to their Jamaican community. Jeheime Llewellyn, former student of Ferncourt High School, received a grant from the association some years ago to cover some of the expenses incurred over a four-year period while attending school. She returned Thursday and Friday to assist the BTGBA, after completing sixth form and now ready for college.

“The grant was for my ninth, 10th, 11th and 12th grades, so they paid transportation for those four years, so I’ve been a beneficiary for those years and it’s been really helpful because just (the cost of) school material is a lot,” Llewellyn said.

Grateful for grant

“I am always appreciative. It’s really good that the former members of the community can come back and give back to community members, and I personally am happy for the experience and the chance for me to give back, too.

While assisting, Llewellyn also took the opportunity to do an eye test. So, too, did another Beecher Town resident, Madgene Cope-Davis, who in fact accessed all the services on offer.

Meanwhile, BTGBA Director of Finance Sidney Brown, speaking on behalf of the group, said they were happy to be able to continue giving back to the community.

“Our purpose continues to be of help to the community, helping those who are maligned. People who experience difficulties sending their children to school, we try to provide them with assistance; we tend to the sick and those who are unable to help themselves, and just about any other thing that we can do to uplift the community,” he said.