The staff of CIBC Canada and CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank were on a mission early this year to lift up the needy people of Abaco with a shipment of donated goods that arrived on the island recently.
According to Frank and Phyllis McVicker, the project was initiated and spearheaded by their daughter, Sue Cronacher, who works out of one of CIBC’s Ontario branches. Mr. McVicker explained that once the bank’s customers observed the donations being brought into the bank, their excitement led them to join the effort with donations of their own.
Throughout four months of collecting, and sorting through donations of clothing and footwear, blankets and toiletries to determine those suitable for shipping, the products were packaged for their voyage to Abaco.
Bahamas Red Cross members Barbara Johnson and Christine Lightbourne arrived at the Marsh Harbour Port Department with Nakera Symonette, product and sales training manager of CIBC FirstCaribbean in Nassau, to clear the goods.
Symonette shared that she was pleased to be present for the occasion and to see everything come together so successfully.
She further stated: “The team in Canada did such an amazing job with driving the donation efforts, and we at CIBC FirstCaribbean were thrilled to have been able to partner with them and assist in the process of transporting the items from Canada to Abaco.
“We’re also very pleased to have collaborated with the Bahamas Red Cross in this worthwhile initiative, and are very hopeful that this donation will be of great value to the people of Abaco.”
Mr. McVicker added that they were fortunate to partner with Pastor Rudy McKinney of Full Gospel Assembly because he knows where the need is and has agreed to lend his support with distribution of the goods.
Both Mr. and Mrs. McVicker were employed at CIBC in Canada collectively for almost 60 years. The McVickers have been visiting Abaco for the past 27 years with Sue since she was a child. After hearing of devastation on the island, they set out to provide some sort of community outreach for those in need.
“It’s been a journey all for a great cause and for helping communities,” Symonette concluded.