Development Bank is on the right path, says first Chairman

Mr Samuel Nathaniel (left) accepts a certificate of appreciation for the Development Bank from Director of Project Strong Mr Dale Phipps. Looking on are student Ms Kamille Hanley (2nd left) and Project Strong’s Deputy Director Ms Michelle Gonzales.

BASSETERRE ST. KITTS (September 18, 2012) — As the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis celebrates 29 years since it attained its independence, first Chairman of the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis, Mr Samuel Nathaniel, is expressing amazement at the strides the institution has made since its inception over 31 years ago.

“It is an amazing move,” said Mr Nathaniel on Friday September 14 at Project Strong in Basseterre where students were showcasing their talent at an Independence Patriotic Programme. “It is not only amazing but it is encouraging that the Bank is now spreading itself to more corporate citizenry. It is very good that the Bank is spreading.”

The former chairman made the remarks after he was informed that the Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis had made a monetary contribution towards sponsoring Project Strong students to travel to Nevis in June this year. In appreciation, the educational institution gave the Development Bank a certificate of appreciation which was accepted by Mr Nathaniel.

“It caught me by surprise this morning,” observed Mr Nathaniel who is also on Project Strong’s Advisory Board. “I wasn’t aware that the Bank had been taking such an active part in the group, and I think they should continue to go along that line, getting themselves involved in what is going on in the community and help as much as they can within their policy.”

Mr Nathaniel implored the Development Bank to continue assisting Project Strong as in so doing it would be helping young and marginalised persons, who are at risk, in preparing them to make a positive contribution to themselves and the country at large. He noted that even though those students lacked subjects they had tremendous potential for development.

“They have the morality that it takes, the honesty, the fairness, the willingness to learn, the willingness to help, the sense of justice and in all those things that make up morality,” commented Mr Nathaniel. “The Bank might well be helping to prepare someone who will one day bring these things to bear in helping the Bank to move forward.”

Project Strong students perform a song as part of the Patriotic Programme.

Director of Project Strong, Mr Dale Phipps, said that this year’s Patriotic Programme was the second one as he introduced it last year because he thought that it was necessary to showcase the students’ skills and put them out in the public. This year’s Independence Anniversary is being observed under the theme ‘Cherishing Children, Strengthen Families’.

Featured speaker was former Project Strong Director Mr Washington Archibald, who talked on the life and times of Mr Joseph Matthew Sebastian whose actions triggered agitation not only for education, better working conditions but also for the country’s independence.

“I believe that it would be able to help them to build their self confidence and self esteem as well,” said Mr Phipps. “They are taking it quite well because in the process they are learning more about their country as well and they know that when this is done then they would be promoting the institution. I think we are making better citizens out of them.”

He explained that the trip to Nevis was to give the students some exposure in working in a different environment. He noted that the trip helped them to foster certain social skills which they needed. They as a result met other persons in different environments which was quite useful. Project Strong wants to ensure that they would be able to fit in the community and the world of work.

“Persons would have assisted in cash and some would have given things like food items and so on,” said Mr Phipps. “The Development Bank of St. Kitts and Nevis was instrumental in this and they would have given a cash donation. We are quite thankful they would have come on board to support us in this time of need.”

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