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by Ricky Jordan
Sunday’s final figure in cash and pledges from Barbados’ first live-aid concert was $140 000, while others continued to donate and pledge more yesterday.
Co-ordinator Adisa Aja Andwele, who took the project to the Ministry of Social Transformation, said the pledges in kind were nearly enough to start the construction of the emergency shelter, for which the objective is to raise $1 million.
He said Rayside Construction pledged $15 000 in concrete blocks and stone, while Evelyn Concrete Works pledged $16 000 in cash, Hinds Transport $2 000 in earth-moving equipment, and José Y José equipment to dig the foundation.
Other pledges were: septic wells to be dug by CB Compressors, a year’s supply of dispensers and liquid soap from TropiChem, treatment of the site by Rodney’s Pest Control, a computer from Tropical Computers, six metres of concrete from McGyver’s Construction, $2 000 in bed linens from Starlight Supplies, $2 000 in structural cable from Property Control Systems, and cement from Arawak Cement Plant.
Furthermore, organisers said an offer of two acres of land had been made.
Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Social Transformation Ruth Blackman said while no site had yet been earmarked, she was optimistic of reaching the $1 million target.
“When we put everything together we won’t be far off from what we want. I’m very encouraged, especially by the response of the ordinary man in the street,” she said, noting a steady stream of donors had come to the ministry yesterday.
She said businesses also called to find out to whom cheques should be sent.
Aja, who also recently piloted a successful poverty drive for Sierra Leone, said he was proud to be Barbadian, especially as he went through the crowd in Bridgetown on Sunday night and people put $20 bills and other cash into his box.
He added that entertainers had given their services freely to the concert featuring eight bands and a host of individual artistes on two massive stages.
Police working Sunday night also pledged that night’s pay to the cause.
“I haven’t been able to get on the Internet yet to see what’s going on in terms of pledges via credit card, but www.vob929.com will have the concert on its site for a month,” said Blackman.
Collection bins have been placed at FirstCaribbean Bank, the Public Workers’ Co-Operative Credit Union and other business houses.
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