The Seventh-day Adventist Church, West Bay recently held its annual Community Guest Day, honoring businesses and organizations working to help those in need in the district and beyond.
Hundreds were in attendance at the event held on Oct. 15 at the Sir John A. Cumber School Hall. The hall is serving as a temporary home for the 500 member Church as it awaits the completion of its new facility, under construction, that replaces its previous location which was destroyed in Hurricane Ivan.
The Lightbearers Club, the youth arm of the church, seated the guests and presented a drill display, and awards and gifts were presented to the Foster family of Foster’s Food Fair IGA, accepted by Woody Foster; the Crisis Centre, accepted by director Ania Milanowska-Sedgley; and to the CAYS Foundation, accepted by Denise Williams-Watson.
“Every year, for many years running now, we recognize groups and individuals for their various contributions to the people of West Bay, with the recipients voted on by the church community,” said Sabbath School superintendent Paula Mendez.
She said that Foster’s has been a consistent donor to not only the West Bay community but also to the church itself, providing food for its vacation Bible school and other camps, as well as providing gift certificates for the youth in the Lightbearers Club, which organizes activities such as hiking and camping.
This year, the Foster’s 35th Anniversary Year of Giving has been focusing on giving back to the community through various means, including highlighting one charity a month that serves Cayman, and recognizing and assisting individuals throughout the islands that exemplify the caring ethos. The campaign has raised more than $105,000 from customers for local charities.
The Crisis Centre was also honored at the event. The organization is Cayman’s only dedicated nonprofit providing emergency shelter for abused women and their children, a 24-hour toll free crisis line, ongoing support and counseling programs for children and youth, as well as conducting outreach activities.
The third organization honored at the event was the CAYS Foundation, a nonprofit group serving children and youth, which operates two therapeutic programs, the Frances Bodden Children’s Home and the Bonaventure Boys Home. A CAYS press release states the Frances Bodden Children’s Home is designated for children in need of care and protection, and the Bonaventure Boys Home addresses the treatment needs of adjudicated boys.
The CAYS programs focus on group interaction and positive personal development and use a strength-based approach rather than punishment and isolation, and focus on giving troubled youth and children structure, support, understanding and empathy in a humane and nurturing environment, with the objective of returning them to their families or to the community with the skills they need to be successful members of society.