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Making a Difference – This is accountability – Good Job Bibi! February 29, 2012

Filed under: Bibi-khan,Essequibo — Leguanite @ 3:54 pm
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Dear Supporters, Members, Donors and Advisors,
Assalam o alikum, Good Day, Namaskar and Sat Siri Akal
I am very pleased to inform you that LCRO is now a Registered NGO and a TRUST ORG. in
Guyana.
After three years of hard work, we have finally made a breakthrough in Leguan. However, it was
not easy for me alone to do. We registered the Organization in 2008 in Ontario. Before this, from
2006 to 2008, 1 worked diligently to get the husbands from the poor families in Leguan to allow their
wives to partake in a program that will boost their family income and lifestyle. This was a very
difficult task to do.
On my recent trip to Leguan, Guyana in July 201 1, 1 convinced my husband to accompany me. I
spent 4% months there and returned to Canada in December 2011. My husband spent one month
and together, we walked from village to village to provide him with a first hand view of the urgent
needs of the impoverished people of Leguan. He formed a very good impression of the needs of
the poor people and the reasons why LCRO needs to assist the people from my birthplace.
My stay was very hectic with travelling back and forth to Georgetown to get things done. I had to
rush back to get the ferry which leaves at 4.00 p.m. for Leguan. If I miss the ferry then I have to
travel with the speed boat which is not very safe and much more expensive than the ferry. So,
because of this, not much could be done in a day. It took 2 months with travelling back and forth in
order to get LCRO registered as an NGO and TRUST in Georgetown, as they were very busy with
applications for NGOs that applied before us. With the grace of GOD, the staff members of the
Friendly Soc~etyw ere very helpful; they guided me in the right direction. They took our application
and passed it through to the right channels. My sincere thanks go out to all these ANGELS.
In the meantime, I had to apply for a waiver of duty for the clearing of our shipment container of
donated items going from Canada for distribution to the poor people in Leguan. In order to obtain
this, the Guyana Government wanted a picture profile of what LCRO has done and what we
propose to do in Leguan and they suggested that pictures be saved on a CD. I had to put this
together and hand it in to GRA in the month of September 201 1.
Because of the election campaign in Guyana, the Waiver of Duty was delayed and did not get
approved until December. It was originally approved in October, but because the papers went from
one ministry to another, some of them were missing. So I had to redo the whole procedure. With a
lot of pleading and begging, they were finally ready in December and I was able to retrieve the
shipped container just before my time was up to return to Canada. In future we will not have this
much hassle to clear anything going to LCRO in Leguan as we are now a registered NGO in
Leguan, Guyana.
Guyana Transport Minister, MR. BRINDLEY H.R. BENN has always been KIND to LCRO. We
THANK him for his kindness in giving us Concession on the ferry to transport the shipment
container to Leguan. Because the shipment was a container load, we had to pay $400.00 US, to
the custom broker, Georgetown shipping agent, customs storage and truck driverllabourers to pickup
and take the shipment down to Leguan.
While waiting for the shipment to arrive in Guyana, I came across the perfect building for our
Centre. I had the surveyor surveyed the property and it was ready for our lawyer to settle the deal.
Then, the owner decided that LCRO should purchase it under the table. In other words, they
wanted us to pay $3.8 million dollars while the amount on the transport and other legal documents
would appear as $1.5 million. I refused to purchase the property under this condition. In the
meanwhile, Mamad’s property at Maryville was put up for sale and we lost it in the process of
securing this other property. Nevertheless, I bought some zinc sheets and together, I and a young
man called Mustapha, our Director of Youth and Education in Leguan, repaired the roof of my
family’s old leaky house with these zinc sheets. Then, we used this house to hold our meetings etc.
I was so very busy with getting the organization registered in Guyana and taking care of
administrative tasks and with the time being so limited, I did not get a chance to start much of the
women’s programs on this trip. I was also sick for more than a week after taking the speed boat in
the spring tide. The spring tide is when the water is very high and very rough. I felt as if my joints
were being separated. So after my illness, when travelling to Georgetown, I tried to make the ferry
to get back to Leguan instead of using the speedboat.
We THANK MRS. SEETA HANIF, OUR VICE PRESIDENT for speaking to one of her relatives in
Guyana to assist us with any help we needed in Leguan. This woman brought a teacher to teach
CAKE- DECORATING to the women in Leguan; then she will teach them Pastry Making and Tie-
Dying. The programs each cost $48,000 GUY. We requested that the women who enroll in the
program each pay $4,000 to the teacher, as I was out of funds at this time. I felt that $4,000 was a
reasonable price as the Guyana Government had previously introduced the hairdressing program in
Leguan and those individuals who enrolled in the program had to each pay $5,000 to do the
program. In addition, these individuals also had to purchase all the supplies that they required
weekly for the program.
I also met some people who were very good, and they advised me to bring courses that are being
taught in the Technical Institute at Lenora, West Coast Demerara to the Island of Leguan. So, we
sent 2 young people to learn the courses and in 2 to 3 months they will be able to teach these
courses to the other students in Leguan who cannot afford to pay the transportation cost. These
subjects are ELECTRICAL, PLUMBING, REFRIDGERATION REPAIR, TECHNOLOGY
INFORMATION AND BUSINESS ADMINSTRATION. The programs will be overseen by two retired
teachers. We are currently looking for used computers to send down to Leguan to run these
programs.
We bought Exercise and Text Books and handed them out at the end of August to 64 selected
students from Kindergarten to Grade 12. These youths are from poor and single parent families.
The school has textbooks that the teachers use to teach the subjects, but the students who do not
own textbooks have to borrow them or do the homework from their memory. Because some of
these youths are a bit slow and cannot write fast, they have to borrow the text books from the
youths who own them and sometimes they have to wait until 10.00 p.m. to get the books to do their
homework. We also bought text books, exercise books and uniform for a grade 10 student whose
mother and grandparents wanted to remove her from school because they could not afford the
school expenses.
WE ARE VERY GRATEFUL AND THANKFUL TO MR. AND MRS. KEN SINGH, BENNY and RON
OF ATLAS CARGO OF TORONTO, CANADA, FOR SHIPMENT OF THE CONTAINER TO
GUYANA AND FOR ADVERTISING LCRO 201 1 SUMMER SHOW FUNDRAlSlNG EVENT ON
PANORAMA TV. We ask that you and your families please use and support PANORAMA TV when
you need to advertise your events and programs and ATLAS CARGO Shipping Company when you
need to make a shipment to GUYANA. A very SPECIAL THANK YOU to MR. JIM YARDON from
OTTAWA for his continued hard work for LCRO.
We also take this opportunity to THANK MR. ZAKlR ALI, LCRO ADMINSTRATOR AND HIS
WONDERFUL WIFE. They travelled from OTTAWA to TORONTO with some of the goods in their
van and worked very hard to get several loads to Atlas Cargo and needed to return to OTTAWA the
same day. We also THANK MR. NEELMANI from Ottawa, for his assistance in transporting some
of the goods to Toronto and assisting with LCRO’s 201 1 SUMMER SHOW FUNDRAISING EVENT.
We ESPECIALLY THANK MRS.TULSI RAHAMAN, OUR SECRETARY for all her efforts in
organizing LCRO’s 2011 SUMMER SHOW FUNDRAlSlNG EVENT which raised
APPROXIMATELY $3030.00 including donations and pledges made. PLEDGES made by a few of
the individuals were MATCHED by Human Concern International (HCI). I asked HCI to hold on to
the funds for our proposed Community Centre in Leguan. We also collected cash in the amount of
$2,474.00 from tickets sales and raffle. One cheque was returned to LCRO NSF. This amount from
the ticket sales and the raffle was used for LCRO’s expenses during my recent trip to Leguan.
OUR DEEPEST APPRECIATION AND THANKS GO OUT TO MOHAMED HANlF AND RAYMOND
NARAYAN, our HOST AND MCs for the evening, KHALLEEL MOHAMED for his story telling,
SHANEEZ POONOW and family for providing the Food Table, DJ ANNAND WHO PROVIDED
OUR MUSIC, HIS WIFE, SHOMA FOR HER FUNDRAISING EFFORTS, and THE VARIOUS
OTHER ARTISTS – SASHA, RITA AND SHIVANIE, MUMTAZ AND GROUP, CAMEELO AND
GROUP, AND KRISHNA RAMKISSOON AND GROUP FOR THEIR SPECTACULAR
PERFORMANCES AT LCRO 201 1 SUMMER SHOW FUNDRAlSlNG EVENT. You have all done
such a fantastic job. Your time, talent and support were highly appreciated and will always be
cherished and we look forward to your continued support at LCRO’s future fundraising events.
WE ALSO THANK THE AUDIENCE that participated and the various individuals (there are too
many names to include in this report, but you know who you are) who made the donations and
pledges to LCRO, THANKS SO VERY MUCH for your support. Our fundraising event could not
have been successful without all of you. At our next Fundraising event, we hope to raise enough
funds to make the Community Centre a reality for the residents of Leguan. We urge you to please
continue to support us with your donations.
The families of Leguan desperately need a Community Centre for many purposes. There are many
young boys and girls from various areas in Leguan who are illiterate – from BAGHPART,
BLENHEIM to CANE FIELD and SUCCESS to PHOENIX – they would like to learn to read and
write – a basic necessity in life. Some of these youths never went to school and some had very
little learning due to poverty and poor parental guidance. A retired school teacher who is part of our
Committee in Leguan is willing and ready to teach these youths when we can provide a Community
Centre for them to attend. We should be able to obtain textbooks and supplies from the GUYANA
GOVERNMENT LITERACY PROGRAM for these youths.
My husband and I would like to take this opportunity to THANK MR. MOHAMED RAMZAN
SATTAUR, OUR FUNDRAISING DIRECTOR, for all his fundraising efforts and for accommodating
us at his residence each time we visit Toronto. I must also say THANK YOU TO MR. UMESH
REVANKAR, MY HUSBAND AND LCRO TREASURER, for the personal, financial and moral
support that he has given to me and LCRO. THANK YOU also goes out from all of us to MRS.
ELAINE ALI and her ENTIRE FAMILY who travelled from OTTAWA to TORONTO to assist with the
2011 LCRO FUNDRAISING EVENT and who also gave us CASH DONATION. Without the help of
these good people, we could not have had such a successful event. We are very grateful to have
such good people in our Organization.
We also like to THANK the following companies who made donations to LCRO: TRlMEDlC
SUPPLY NETWORK LTD. FROM CONCORD, ONTARIO for a donation in the amount of
$1,000.00 in medical instruments, IUD’s etc. to be distributed to the West Coast Clinics. These
instruments were handed over to DR. NADIRA KING of LIMOGES, ONTARIO for distribution to the
Clinics in JanuaryIFebruary 2012; Donation of 4 boxes of Diabetes Strips from Pharmacist M.
STEPHANE DALPE of Zellers Pharmacy in GATINEAU, QUEBEC and Madame JEANNE
KINGSBURY for donating cash, towels, blankets, sheets and pillow cases for the Leguan Cottage
Hospital; 15 bales of T-SHIRT MATERIAL Donated by MR. RESHAN SlDHU of J.R. TEXTILES,
Mississauga, Ontario, THE LIQUIDATION STORE IN GATINEAU, QUEBEC for all the warm
CLOTHING they DONATED, Cutlery and Books for our future Library in Leguan which were
Donated by ALGOQUIN COLLEGE IN OTTAWA.
THANK YOU also goes out to all those good folks in Ottawa and Toronto, who donated clothes,
shoes, jewellery, purses and other articles etc. THANK YOU also to ORLEANS SUPER STORE
MEDICAL CLINIC, and some families who donated toys, two sewing machines and other items.
We will be taking more Donations in 2012 but would like to receive a cash donation along with the
items to assist with the clearance and transportation cost of the items when they arrive in Guyana.
LCRO THANKS TALLIM BACHUS and HCI for all their support, RAM SAHADEO and HIS GROUP
for their assistance and donations, JAI SEECHARRAN from ARRIZONA and HIS SCHOOL MATES
for MATCHING OUR FUNDS and to all those persons whose NAMES are not listed WE THANK
YOU – because of YOU, we are making a difference in Leguan. We need your continued support
and donations to provide this much needed service to the poor families and children in Leguan. We
believe that once LCRO is fully established and is in full operation, we may be able to convince the
different sources in GUYANA to provide some resources to assist the impoverished families of
Leguan.
In August 201 1, we arranged for a Hindu Priest from Canada to go down to Leguan, Guyana to
assist in bringing the Hindus together but the people need someone to stay longer than 1 month on
the Island to do the job. This priest took clothes for the deities of Labagatelle Mandir. If anyone
from the Muslim Faith would like to go down to Leguan to assist the muslims there, please feel free
to contact me. As of this year – 2012, 1 am in contact with a group of Christians who would like to
go down to Leguan in 2013. Travel is on a voluntary basis and the group or groups need to be
aware that they will pay for their tickets and stand their own expenses in Guyana. I have always
paid my own expenses and used my personal funds for LCRO without re-imbursement.

Bibi Khan

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5 Responses to “Making a Difference – This is accountability – Good Job Bibi!”

  1. Aptie Sookoo Says:

    Bibi Khan Congratulations! For being one of the shepherdess in this tremendous philanthropic organization.- LCRO. I applaud you and your pool of volunteers for your foresight, intuition and thoughtfulness in your community development intervention program. I was born at Enterprise, Leguan and spent my entire boyish and adolescent life there. I attended St. Peter’s Anglican and Maryville Primary school respectively and left the island to pursue (in Georgetown) advance and specialized studies in 1973. I last visited Leguan in August 2010 to pay my respect to my deceased parents, a brother and friends whose bodies were interred in the Blenheim cemetery. It is true that Leguan is in dire need of a community centre but if my memory serves me right, the current secondary school building (ground floor) was initially intended to be used for that purpose and its first floor as the municipal office. In fact, that structure was constructed around 1976 and I do not know who was responsible for the change in its use. A second building was constructed on the western perimeter of the plot of land and it was designed to be used as a pavilion. I sat on its stairway on several occasions to watch a game of cricket and even a grass track motor cycle race. I believe that the Maha Sabah organization in Georgetown conducts training for “pandits”. You may want to consider asking the leaders of the Hindu temples to identify committed and dedicated members of their congregation who would like to pursue such training. I believe that the training program is accredited by the pandit council and there is a cost attached for that training. I think that when leaders are democratically selected from their parent congregation, their chance of success increases by over a hundred folds. This approach to my mind will support a continuation plan that is sustainable in both short and long term. In fact, it requires minimal financial input from donors or their parent temple in support of its perpetuity. Indeed, it is expensive to import from Canada that level of skill (pandit) on a continual basis and when he leaves a void is created. I do recall that a “pandit” lived in a house that was obliquely opposite the Eastern Leguan Primary school but I am not sure if he is around. I am aware that many skilled and trained professionals have left Leguan and this is not peculiar to the island. This is a national phenomenon that has escalated into a crisis situation and stares the entire country with a sickening reality. I wish you and LCRO the very best and hope that one day I can be of some use. May our almighty father richly bless each and every one of you…

  2. ella Says:

    Right. Good job

  3. BIBI Says:

    LCRO IS NOT A RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION, WE WORK WITH ALL THE RELIGIONS, WE WORK WITH THE POOR, AND WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR GOOD WISHES AND HOPE THAT ONE DAY THE YOUTHS OF LEGUAN, WILL HAVE JOBS LIKE US IN THERE FIELDS.

  4. Dr.Edward Says:

    I would like to know why one would go through the trouble to get a Canadian Pandit to go to Guyana instead of a local Pandit.


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