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Mt Hope Junior Alumni celebrates 45th anniversary
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The alumni of Mount Hope Junior Secondary School is celebrating the school’s 45th anniversary and has planned a number of activities this month to mark the milestone. A weekend of events are planned commencing with a Thanksgiving Service on October 27, at Doxa Ministries, 5 Fifth Street, Barataria, at 7 pm.

On October 28 a reunion dinner, dance and awards ceremony will be held at Mount Hope Junior Secondary School, Gordon Street, Mt Hope, at 6 pm. And, on October 29 the alumni will hold a Cook Out and Retro Karaoke at River Ranch, Bye Pass Road, Arima, from 2 pm.

The list of teachers to receive awards includes seven who have more than 25 years service each. They are Claire Raphael (31); Ricardo Hospedales (30); Valerie Gilbert (29); Cecil Spring (28); Merlene Philip (27); Adrian Debique (26); and, Clive Grayson (25).

Other teachers to be awarded include Rennison Mc Pherson, Maxine Ironside and Anthony Murray. Rose Deane will also be the receipient of an award for her contribution to education.

Awards for outstanding alumnis will also be distributed and recipients include dancer Debbie Howell (Culture); Lennox Sobers (Sport); Anthony Lord (Business); Professor Ingrid Richards (Academics); Kenny Mc Intyre and Gerard Wilson (National Service); and Kenneth Listhroppe (Music).

Yes She Can delivers 2.5 tonnes of relief supplies to Anguilla
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

“I can’t believe I’m doing this!” The words burst unbidden from my mouth when I spotted my mode of transport to Anguilla from St Maarten on September 23. This wasn’t my first visit to Anguilla, so I knew I’d have to take a boat across, but I was not mentally prepared for... this!

My boatmates on this strange and unnerving journey assured me that, since it was after 7 pm, my options had dwindled down to this, or nothing. I composed myself, clambered into the 20-foot fishing boat and prayed for strong nerves and a stronger stomach.

The darkness on the other side of the narrow expanse of cold water refused to release its stubborn grip as much of the island was without power, a ‘gift’ from Hurricane Irma.

What was I doing here? What made me travel from the comforts of my home in Trinidad to an island where there was no running water or electricity, and where over 80 per cent of the buildings had suffered significant damage from the hurricane’s tantrum?

My name is Roberta Rose-Collins. I am the founder of an organisation called Yes She Can based in Trinidad and this is my story.

Less than a month before, my husband, Andre Collins, left Trinidad to take up the position of Director of Sport, Anguilla. I planned to join him by the end of September. When the news came of the storm heading their way, we discussed the preparations taking place on the island almost in the abstract, as, being Trinidadian, we had never experienced a full-on hurricane before. It couldn’t really be that bad, could it?

Then, on September 6, the gods saw fit to put us in our place. When Irma escaped from hell and bore down on the islands, I anxiously followed the news. By the time she slammed into Anguilla she was a Category 5, with winds of 185 mph. I was both worried and curious as to what was happening to the island that would become home for the next few years.

The experience was heart-stopping. The damage was heartbreaking. Andre called as soon as he was able to let me know that he was okay. A simple thing like a call took effort and ingenuity, as connectivity was limited. Over the next few days, as he shared with me what he experienced and the magnitude of Anguilla’s loss, I knew in my heart I needed to do something to help.

Yes She Can is an organisation formed in 2015 to empower women to live healthier lives through three main pillars—self care, physical activity and healthy eating. We embarked on a Triathlon in 2015 and took on Dragonboat racing in 2016. We were used to trying new things, but neither the team members nor I had ever done any sort of aid efforts.

On September 11, we joined the organisations in T&T that were gathering relief supplies and launched a collection drive specifically to benefit Anguilla. Our intention was to combine our efforts and work with the agencies who have the expertise in transporting donated supplies. However, after realising that little aid was reaching Anguilla and that none of the main aid agencies in Trinidad had the island listed for relief at that time, we quickly made Anguilla our target.

In addition to collecting and sorting contributions, we had to find an efficient way to get them there. The port wasn’t operating, so we couldn’t ship anything by sea, but the airport was operational, so if we could get an aircraft to deliver the supplies, we would be golden.

That was easier said than done. The first pilot quoted a hefty price, saying that was the cost of gas only. As a small, not-for-profit organisation, we couldn’t afford it so it was back to the drawing board.

A friend, who understood my desire to get as many items as possible to families with babies and a home for the elderly that had lost everything, purchased a business class ticket for me to St Maarten, using her miles. At least, if all else failed, we could get three suitcases filled with relief supplies to those in need immediately.

We got busy collecting stuff. Individuals donated. Organisations donated. Agencies who were not heading there, donated. The T&T Red Cross Society gave loads of food and toiletries, but the best received donation from them was some solar lanterns.

Then, Sod’s Law struck us hard. Plans fell through with one pilot who went back on his word. I was heartbroken. Was all our hard work for naught? Hardly. On that same day, Caribbean Airlines—God bless them—through the kindness of their CEO—God bless him!—made it possible for us to take over 2.5 tonnes of relief supplies to Anguilla. We sorted and packed the items into 27-gallon industrial-strength containers, thus also giving the families a secure, waterproof place to store their items. They were loaded to a 10-tonne truck donated by Laing and taken to the airport. By the time we did all of that, it was after midnight and I was due back at the airport for 5 am to catch the flight for St Maarten.

From St Maarten to Anguilla, and then family to family, like a Caribbean Santa bringing not toys, but food, water, toiletries and baby supplies we went. The pain I felt at witnessing the hardship, the loss of property, the struggle our Caribbean neighbours were facing was alleviated somewhat by the knowledge that we were making a difference.

We were supported by Andre’s colleagues at the department of Sport in Anguilla, and with their help, those kind donations made it into the right hands. Through the blessings heaped upon us, we were able to bless others.

More Info

Other organisations that supported
• One Love T&T
• Moms Connect TT
• Caribbean Healthy Lifestyle Project Club SOCALM
• The Giving Hand
• Anugraha Yoga
• Yoga with Ved
• The Organic Lounge
• South Florida Caribbean Conference


YSC founder Roberta Rose-Collins, third from right, supported by members of Anguilla’s department of Sport.
Work-related risk factors impact health
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

To introduce the idea of workplace mental health into a scenario where most organisations and individuals do not yet regard mental health or mental ill health with the seriousness that they both deserve is ambitious. But what if we can teach management the inevitability of workplace interventions for improving staff health, morale, wellbeing, and productivity?

When we speak about mental health in the workplace we are discussing occupational health and safety issues. Despite not having focused on psychological health and safety as a population, the time is right given this period of austerity, the increase in incidence and prevalence of mental disorders, and the fact that mental illness accounts for the highest productivity loss worldwide.

The World Health Organization (WHO) says, “A healthy workplace can be described as one where workers and managers actively contribute to the working environment by promoting and protecting the health, safety, and well-being of all employees.”

Quoting a recent guide from the World Economic Forum, the WHO suggests that workplace interventions should take a three-pronged approach:

• Protect mental health by reducing work-related risk factors.

• Promote mental health by developing the positive aspects of work and the strengths of employees.

• Address mental health problems regardless of cause.

Employers are cautioned not to disregard the importance of “interventions and good practices that protect and promote mental health in the workplace”, including:

• Implementation and enforcement of health and safety policies and practices, including identification of distress, harmful use of psychoactive substances (eg alcohol, opiates, marijuana) and illness, and providing resources to manage them;

• Informing staff that support is available;

• Involving employees in decision-making, conveying a feeling of control and participation; organisational practices that support a healthy work-life balance;

• Programmes for career development of employees; and

• Recognising and rewarding the contribution of employees (WHO).

Workplace health and safety risks

 The WHO says: “there are many risk factors for mental health that may be present in the working environment. Most risks relate to interactions between type of work, the organisational and managerial environment, the skills and competencies of employees, and the support available for employees to carry out their work.”

Some of the risks to mental health identified are:

• inadequate health and safety policies;

• low levels of support for employees;

• poor communication and management practices;

• limited participation in decision-making or low control over one’s area of work;

• inflexible working hours; and

• unclear tasks or organisational objectives.

First responders, humanitarian workers, and healthcare providers are among jobs that carry a higher personal risk than others. These services can and have been known to impact on mental health, be a cause of symptoms of mental disorders, or lead to harmful use of psychoactive drugs.

“Risks may also be related to job content, such as unsuitable tasks for the person’s competencies or a high and unrelenting workload. Risk may be increased in situations where there is a lack of team cohesion or social support, too few resources to do what is required, or there may be unsupportive managerial or organisational practices (WHO).

“Bullying and psychological harassment (also known as mobbing),” according to the WHO, “are commonly reported causes of work-related stress by workers and present risks to the health of workers. They are associated with both psychological and physical problems. Reduced productivity and increased staff turnover are among the health consequences and “they can also have a negative impact on family and social interactions.

Mental health interventions should be delivered as part of an integrated health and well-being strategy that covers prevention, early identification, support and rehabilitation.

Mental health interventions can be supported by occupational health services or an integrated team of professionals, including human resources, for example, where they are available, but even when they are not, several changes can (and should) be made to protect and promote mental health.

—Excerpts from http://www.who.int/mental_health/in_the_workplace/en/

• Caroline C Ravello is a strategic communication and media practitioner. She holds an MA in Mass Communications and has completed the Masters in Public Health (MPH) from The UWI. Write to: mindful.tt@gmail.com

Queens show the light of Divali
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Seema Moonilal, 22, is this year’s Divali Queen. The 22-year-old won the title and $20,000 on Monday night at the National Council of Indian Culture (NCIC), in Chaguanas.

There were regional and international contestants in the competition with Canadian Suvina Smolksy placing second and Navina Misir of the United States in third.

Misir also won the Miss Photogenic title.

Shaenna Gilharry, of Belize, won the talent round of the competition.

The award for the Best Sari went to Ashwaita Bachoe, of Suriname.

Bachoe wore a red and gold embroidered sari complete with accessories. The award for Best Hair went to Raveena Nandlal, while the award for Best Makeup was won by Amisha Lulkool.

President of the NCIC Deokienanan Sharma, left, crowns Miss Divali Nagar 201, Seema Moonilal. PICTURES SHASTRI BOODAN
‘Calypso Stickmen’ stun Argentina
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Australian-based Akim Toussaint scored two first-half field goals to lead T&T ‘Calypso Stickmen’ to a 5-2 upset of Argentina in the third and final match of the opening night of competition in the Indoor Pan American Cup Men’s Tournament at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall in Guyana on Monday night.

The early moments favoured Argentina but after wasting two penalty corners opportunities, the South Americans needed their goalkeeper Francisco Demonte to make a huge save to keep the momentum going.

Not to be outdone at the other end, T&T custodian Ron Alexander dove to stop a Juan Eleicegui shot after being set up by a brilliant run Alejo Lacaze.

T&T would eventually break the deadlock in the 14th minute when a midfield intercept and spirited run by Jordan Riviera found Toussaint and his poised finish gave the ‘Calypso Stickmen’ the 1-0 lead.

Remarkably, Toussaint doubled the lead in the same minute of a mishandled pushback by the Argentines.

Argentina continue to falter on their penalty-corners with Alfreda Sosa shooting wide and Eleicigui mis-trapping at the top, before Leandro Leotta finally scored from the field with a blistering shot that found the mesh in the 18th.

The second-half featured three early goals for T&T with Dwain Quan Chan (23rd), Jordan Viera (24th) and captain Solomon Eccles (26th) that put Caribbean nation in the drivers seat at 5-2 ahead.

Despite the three-goal gap Argentina continued to push forward and managed to get a second item two minutes from full-time time when Alfredo Sosa scored from a penalty-corner.

Yesterday, the Raphael Govia-coached T&T men were back in action and improved to a perfect six points with a 4-0 triumph over Guyana via second-half items from Aidan De Gannes in the 25th, Jordan Reynos, a 28th minute penalty and Mickell Pierre and Jordan Vieira, both in the 40th minute.

In yesterday’s two early matches, Canada also improved to 2-0 with a 6-1 defeat of Barbados while Mexico came up against Argentina last night.

Today, T&T meets Barbados from 3.15pm followed by Mexico and Guyana at 5.45pm, and Argentina and Canada to close off the night from 8.15pm.

The six-team round-robin series will continue daily until Friday, at the end of which, the top two teams will contest the final, from which the tournament winner will qualify to the Indoor World Cup in Berlin, Germany, next February.

Stickwomen suffer third straight loss

T&T women’s indoor hockey team dropped to a 0-3 record in its Women Indoor Pan American Cup seven-team series at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall, in Georgetown, Guyana yesterday.

This after the Alanna Lewis-captained ‘Calypso Stickwomen’ went under to Argentina yesterday and Uruguay on Monday night by similar 4-0 margins to add to their 7-2 loss to USA on Monday morning.

In the loss against Argentina, Emma Yanzi scored a second-half brace in the 21st, a penalty-stroke and 26th minute after Carina Guzman, first minute opener was followed by Julianna Ferreyra’s eighth minute item.

And Uruguay on Monday night Maria Teresa Viana Ache (20th), captain Augustina Nieto (25th), Camila de Maria (38th) and Constanza Barrandeguy (39th) were on target for the winners.

In yesterday’s first women’s encounter Canada blanked Guyana 2-0 to improve to maximum six points, three behind the Argentines while Uruguay (six points) came up against USA in the late match.

In Monday night other matches, Argentina blanked Guyana 3-0 and Canada spanked Barbados 5-1.

Today (Wednesday), T&T meets Canada from 2pm followed by Argentina and USA at 4.30pm and Guyana and Barbados at 7pm.

The seven-team round-robin series will continue daily until Friday, at the end of which, the top two teams will contest the final, from which the tournament winner will qualify to the Indoor World Cup in Berlin, Germany, next February.

T&T’s Jordan Reynos goes past an Argentina player during their 2017 Indoor Pan American Cup Men’s Tournament match at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall, in Georgetown, Guyana on Monday night. T&T won 5-2. PICTURE YAN HUCKENDUBLER
Slow development
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

This year’s juvenile season is yet to get underway as we move into the third week of October. It is surely a sign of the times that the two-year-old races scheduled for September 25 and October 7 have both been cancelled.

The earliest turfites can now expect to see the juvenile crop, is actually in the first classic event for these horses – the Nursery Stakes. It is scheduled to run off on October 28 and after the first subscription stage, a mere eight horses have been entered, three of them being Jamaican bred.

This is a far cry from the heady days when the Nursery Stakes was one of the premier two-year-old events in the racing calendar – even thought it was always the first classic of the year.

The first officially recorded running of the event came in 1956 and on 11 occasions since then, the race has had to be run off in two divisions due to the surfeit of entries.

Of course, in those early days, the race, which has always been hosted at Santa Rosa, was run off on a turf surface. In those days, it was not uncommon for two year olds to already have had one or two starts before facing the starter in this feature event. Could it be that since we switched to a sand surface, the breed has gotten slower in their development?

Some fantastic horses litter the honour roll of this event including Derby winners, Jouvert, Aquarius, El Camino, Royal Salute, Conquest, Flag Woman, Sara’s Music and Momentum. The latter two being the only eventual Derby winners to have won the race after it switched to a sand surface. Other renowned winners of the race, who went on to win at least one of the three year old classics, were Isis, Irish Honor, Northern Regent, Northern Bird, Shinkansen, and The Gatsby. Northern Regent won two legs of the Triple Crown but came up short in his attempt to win the final leg, the Derby.

All the names called would bring back great memories for anyone involved in the sport for longer than 10 years. It would also generate a considerable amount of nostalgia for those magical days of the sport in this country.

Besides the nostalgia, at a much more practical level, the reality is that, in those days when our two year olds were ready to race in June of their two year old years, the Trinidad Derby was run off on Boxing Day of their three year old season. The current situation is that our two year olds are barely ready to race before November of their two year old season and we have now brought the Derby forward to August of their three year old season from its previous September date.

The classic season in this country therefore spans a mere 10 months. Compare this with Jamaica, where their two year olds begin racing from May and Barbados, whose two years old begin racing in May/June. In the UK, their two year olds begin racing from as early as March. If our breed is developing more slowly, the question is are we doing the right thing by bringing forward our premier three year old classic. Interestingly, while we have brought forward the ultimate classic, the Derby, we have pushed to a later date the other two legs of the Triple Crown.

No Trinidad bred horse has won the Derby since Sweet Revenge’s victory in 2007 – Back In Top in 2010 was brought into this country in utero. The T&T classic season, and Derby in particular, undeniably favour Jamaican bred horses who tend to be more precocious than their Trinidad bred counterparts.

Interestingly, the three Jamaica bred Derby winners prior to Leading Lady all failed to win another race in their careers while the better of their Trinidad bred counterparts, many of whom were well beaten in the Derby, continued their careers with some aplomb.

Given the slow developing nature of the T&T breed, the question to be asked is - should we move our Derby back to Boxing Day? In the glory days of the sport, the Derby, the President’s Cup and the two Breeders Stakes (now St Ann’s and St James) were all run on that glorious Boxing Day. What a day that was! This change could be the catalyst for T&T’s equivalent of a Champions Day!

Miscellaneuos Laventille gets back on track
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Miscellaneous Laventille United got its Northern Football Association Premier Division title push back on track with a back-to-back wins over four-day span.

On Thursday last, Miscellaneous Laventille blanked Queen’s Park Cricket Club 2-0 with goals from Kevin Mc Neil and Duane Samuel, and followed it up with a 3-2 win over visiting Cultural Roots in Laventille on Sunday.

Then trio of Kareem Charles, Clint Raymond and Richard Elliot got a goal each for Miscellaneous Laventille, which was coming off of two defeats in its last four matches after a perfect 5-0 start to the season.

With the victories, Miscellaneous Laventille United improved to 24 points from ten matches, four ahead of the surging St Francois Nationals while RSSR is third with 19, two more than Cultural Roots which got its items from Stephan Jack and Shawn Andrews.

St Francois followed up its 5-3 defeat of the league leaders with two more wins against last year’s champions, cellar-placed Maple FC (4-2) and RSSR, 2-0.

In the Championship Division, St Ann’s All Stars handed leaders Cantaro United only its second loss in 12 matches, 1-0 on Wednesday, before the latter rebounded with a 3-0 blanking of Morvant Elements on Saturday to improve to 27 points from 13 matches.


Premier Division
RSSR 5 bt Maple FC 2
Malta Carib Alcons 1 vs QPCC 0
Miscellaneous Laventille 3 (Joel Raymond, Kareem Charles, Duane Samuel) vs Belmont FC 0
Carenage United 2 vs St Francois Nationals 2
Cultural Roots 3 vs Malta Carib Alcons 2
Belmont FC 3 vs Maple FC 0
QPCC 3 vs Carenage United 0 - by default
St Francois Nationals 5 vs Miscellaneous Laventille 3
RSSR 2 (Jovan Vincent, Hakim Gulston) vs Belmont FC 0
Cultural Roots 2 vs Carenage United 2
St Francois Nationals 4 vs Maple FC 2
Miscellaneous Laventille 2 (Kevin Mc Neil, Duane Samuel) vs QPCC 0
Miscellaneous Laventille 3 (Kareem Charles, Clint Raymond, Richard Elliot) vs Cultural Roots 2 (Shawn Andrews, Stephan Jack)
Carenage United vs Malta Carib Alcons - postponed
St Francois Nationals 2 vs RSSR 0
QPCC 3 vs Maple FC 0 - by default
Championship Division
Patna/River Estate 2 vs St Ann’s All Stars 1
Barataria Warriors 1 vs Harvard FC 0
Cantaro United 1 vs B8BH Police Youth Club 0
Trendsetter Hawks 5 vs Paramin Scholars 0
Malvern 3 vs Morvant Elements 0
St Ann’s All Stars 6 vs Harvard FC 1
Cantaro United 4 vs Patna/River Estate 3
Paramin Scholars 1 vs Barataria Warriors 0
Police Youth Club 6 vs Morvant Elements 3
Trendsette Hawks 3 vs Malvern FC 0
St Ann’s All Stars 1 vs Cantaro United 0
Paramin Scholars 3 vs Harvard SC 1
Patna/River Estate 5 vs Morvant Elements 1
Malvern Fc 4 vs Barataria Warriors 3
Police Youth Club 1 vs Trendsetter Hawks 0
St Ann’s All Stars 5 vs Paramin Scholars 1
Cantaro United 3 vs Morvant Elements 0
Malvern FC 3 vs Harvard FC 0
Patna/River Estate 2 vs Trendsetter Hawks 0
Police Youth Club 3 vs Barataria Warriors 1


Premier Division
Teams P W D L F A Pts
1. Misc. Laventille 10 8 0 2 31 9 24
2. St Francois 10 6 2 2 28 16 20
3. RSSR 10 6 1 3 19 13 19
4. Cultural Roots 10 5 2 3 24 19 17
5. QPCC 10 4 1 5 17 20 13
6. Alcons 8 4 0 4 11 14 12
7. Carenage Utd 8 2 2 4 12 16 8
8. Belmont FC 8 2 1 5 9 17 7
9. Maple FC 10 0 1 9 7 29 1
Second Division
1. Cantaro United 13 8 3 2 34 19 27
2. St Ann’s 14 7 2 5 35 23 23
3. Trendsetter Hawks 13 7 2 4 28 17 23
4. Paramin Scholars 12 7 1 4 35 26 22
5. Patna/River Estate 14 6 4 4 36 34 22
6. Malvern FC 11 7 1 3 25 23 22
7. Police Youth Club 12 6 2 4 28 20 20
8. Patna/River Estate 13 5 4 4 34 34 19
9. Barataria Warriors 12 3 1 8 14 28 10
11. Harvard 12 2 1 9 14 35 7
12. Morvant Elements 14 1 3 10 22 46 6

Costelloe settles for second in B’dos
Wednesday, October 18, 2017

T&T’s top triathlete Jason Costelloe continued his great form this year with another medal and trophy after he placed second at the Barbados National Triathlon event on Sunday. Over 100 competitors took part in the multi-sport event and they came from across the region and overseas.

Jamaican Philip McCatty made a successful defence of the title he won a year ago when he clocked a combined time of one hour and 59 minutes.

Participants represented T&T, Grenada, Jamaica, Great Britain, Canada, Antigua and the host nation. The race started with a 1,500 meter swim, where Costelloe came out of the water with a personal best of just under 22 minutes which saw him in fifth place and just over a minute behind the leaders.

Next up, the 40 km bike ride which Costelloe describes as his strongest discipline, he clocked another personal best time of 57 minutes, the fastest time for the day and was 35 seconds behind the race leader. The final discipline was the 10 km run.

Costelloe, the reigning Caribbean Triathlon champion told Guardian Media Sports, “ My legs were taxed from pushing hard on the bike and I was trying my best to keep up to speed with the hopes that first place would also start to slow. However, this was not to be. He (Philip McCatty) kept up his running pace and by the first 5km extended the lead back to over one minute. After this each km passing felt like a hundred miles, and I started to question myself why on earth do I compete in this sport... reality set in as I started to fade in the final 4 km and my pace started to slow down. From here on I decided to maintain my current pace and hold onto second as first was then out of reach.”

Costelloe finished in an overall time of two hours and three minutes, some seven minutes faster than he did in his last event in Miami, USA in April, which was his primary focus when he arrived in Barbados. Now he says there is no time to rest as he was back to training on Monday, and has a multi-sport event this weekend.

T&T’s Jason Costelloe crosses the finishing line in second place at the 2017 Barbados National Triathlon on Sunday.
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