Last week, Trinity’s Canadian Medical Students Association (CaMSA) once again took part in an outreach event. On Tuesday, April 26th, the group handed over much-needed material donations to the Luis Punnett Home, the Mental Health Rehabilitation Centre, and the St. Benedict Children’s Home, Milton Cato Memorial Hospital, and a number of smaller health clinics throughout the island.
Fourth term student and current CaMSA president Sonia Stasyszyn explained: “At the end of every term, we try to get the students who are leaving to give back, and we have now accumulated over nine barrels (ed. note: 55 gallon shipping barrel) of clothing and other necessities. We are basically spreading out the clothing and linens donations among those three institutions.” She added this was only the beginning, noting: "We have more goods coming from Canada, where we are working with dentists, doctors, local businesses, friends, and family to fill more barrels with anything these facilities might need. The response from our communities at home has been tremendous.”
Luis Punnett Home and Ministry of Health, Welness and the Environment representative Marie Davis was floored by the volume and quality of the donation. “It’s a privilege,” she said, “I notice that Trinity’s motto is ‘Challenge, Inspire and Empower,' and it's so true. Blessings on the life of the institution. We appreciate your contribution so much and we are looking forward to our continued relationship.”
Sr. Diana Bailey, senior nursing officer at the Mental Health Rehabilitation Centre echoed her sentiment, as did deputy administrator of Milton Cato, Andrew Williams.
The members of CaMSA were keen to point out that, having lived on the island for two years, giving back was easy. “It’s all about human connection and making sure everyone is okay,” President Stasyszyn added, “that’s why most people have gotten into medicine: to help those who need it.” She also added that while donations of time, money, and material goods were what they could offer for now, that when they finished their MDs, their giving will evolve into actions like donating time and service to the World Pediatric Project or Doctors without Borders.
Trinity's dean, Dr. Linda Adkison, add that Trinity was, "Lucky to have a very large, committed group of students who underscore our mission of being not only clinicians but giving back to the community wherever they can. The fact that these students have really given up their holiday to stay here to do this while their friends have gone off for a couple of weeks, truly demonstrates their passion for what they are doing.” Dean Adkison continued, highlighting the school’s role in the community, “This is a responsibility that we have. It’s about community, it’s about wellbeing, and taking care of the people who are in need at the moment. I think these activities underscore our very strong program and its dedication to living through the ethics and professional behavior of medicine.”
Trinity's CaMSA chapter plans to continue its outreach in St. Vincent and the Grenadines and advancing the quality of life as a thank you for hosting the school and their education.