As founder of the Island Waves Cultural Centre, Garnell Limperes Dawkins believes in hard work and giving back to the community. On July 2, she was rewarded for her efforts.
Leanne Russell and Kendra Jordan-Wright of Furniture Plus presented her with a cheque in the amount of $3,250 to assist her with her work at the center. Last year, Island Waves was selected by Furniture Plus’ Charity of Hope Foundation, which identifies organizations that pursue charitable causes.
According to the company’s Web site, Charity of Hope was launched in 2005 as a charity arm of Furniture Plus to nurture the spirit of giving. During the company’s annual Christmas campaigns, Russell said that “Candles of Hope” and “Angels of Hope” donation tree tags are sold in the stores. Furniture Plus then matches the proceeds and makes a donation to local charities at Christmas.
“Island Waves was our charity of choice this year, and I was very passionate about it being our charity because of my affiliation with the arts,” Russell said. “I’m very happy that Mrs. [Krystynia Lee] d’Arville was in agreement when I pitched the idea to her. She fully backed the vision that Garnell has for giving back to the community through outreach and the programs she offers to not only kids, but to people of all ages.”
Russell added that Furniture Plus was pleased that TJay Stubbs and contestants of the Miss Abaco Pageant became involved. During the launch of the company’s Christmas Campaign, the contestants sold angels as part of their beauty challenge, and to benefit the Charity of Hope as well.
“It was really a coming together of different organizations, which made it better because it was more community oriented. “The Miss Abaco Pageant raised more than $1,200 of the money.”
Meanwhile, Garnell commented that she was humbled and honoured by the donation.
“I’m extremely honoured to accept this cheque to know that so many people see the vision and believe in what we’re doing,” Garnell said. “It was a hard first year just getting the ball rolling, but from here on out, I think that there’s a lot of lives that can be changed of all ages.
“I’m very humbled, and I feel very blessed right now. I can’t wait to outreach to the community. I’m just really excited because now we can actually start putting in motion everything we spent the last year building the foundation. So this is just the beginning, and hopefully it raises awareness.”
The funds were delivered in good time, too, because Garnell plans to offer a Creative Arts Summer Camp at no cost this month to children aged five to 12 years old. The mission of the camp is to empower young people through creative arts and self-expression, while cultivating the Bahamian culture within our youth and communities.
The first Creative Summer Arts Camp will be held from July 15-19 in Marsh Harbour at the Island Waves Cultural Centre; the second camp will be offered to Treasure Cay from July 29 to Aug. 2 at Headstart Academy; and the final one takes place from Aug.12-16 in Sandy Point at James A. Pinder Primary School. All camps run the duration of one week and take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.