On Sunday, September 1 a Back-to-School Giveaway was organized for students from The Mudd. The event, which was organized in part by Octervil Baptist, was the result of donations from local businesses, churches and private citizens. According to Mr. Baptiste this is the first such event organized for the shanty town community. He said that unless the larger community sees them helping themselves and trying to better themselves, how can they expect help and acceptance from Abaconians.
The Mudd is one of two major shanty towns located in Marsh Harbour. The other is the Pigeon Peas.
Pastors from the involved churches were present to pray over and bless the gifts. These included Pastors Sitoir Pasterain, Lucane Joseph, Raynald Olibrice and Antoine Joseph.
Though sound equipment had been set up to help with the announcements and communication with the crowd that day, an electrical surge had fried the equipment. Regardless, the event proceeded with a line-up of children and parents as they received small bags of donated items.
Mr. Octervil said he hopes this lessens the burden on the public schools. With the influx of children from immigrant communities, the Ministry of Education is unable to provide all the supplies to each child necessary for the school year.