Rise Up Bequia is an independent non-profit initiative working for the public interest of the citizens of Bequia, focusing on building and strengthening core ideas and practices of sustainable community development, education, agency and outreach.
The Book Donation Drive was set up in 2014 to help survivors of the December 2013 floods and now supports over 1100 children in every single school on Bequia. The project’s aim is to ensure that each child in Bequia starts the school year with all the supplies they need such as books, pens, pencils, and rulers.
The Sunshine School for Children with Special Needs is a privately funded, not for profit, institution administered by a local Board of Directors and is reliant on donations and fundraising in order to offer the students a wonderful learning environment. The Sunshine School for Children with Special Needs provides a nurturing and learning environment for 30 students living in Bequia from the ages 5 through 20 years old. These children exhibit learning issues caused by a variety of physical, behavioral or mental challenges.
The school provides work related and life skills which allows opportunities for students to contribute at home and in their own community.
You can further support the school by donating to Encore. Encore is Bequia’s First Charity-Run Thrift Store, offering second-hand clothing, books and household items at bargain prices – all in aid of The Sunshine School. Encore will be manned by volunteers and rely on donations of lightly used items from the community and Bequia visitors.
Glen’s pre-school, established in 1998, is a community facility providing a creche and activity center for 45 young boys and girls living in Bequia.
The preschool helps the children, from ages 6 months through 4 years old, to socialize, play together, and enhance their development and learning in preparation for joining general education.
The Bequia Animal Protection Alliance (BAPA) is a non-profit organisation, that has been created in response to the growing number of stray dogs in Bequia. They are dedicated to preventing cruelty and replacing it with kindness to all animals. They provide medical care to animals in need and subsidising veterinary care to low income families.
BAPA conducts ongoing spay/neuter and vaccination campaigns, treats medical conditions, administers emergency/first aid care and facilitates animal adoption. A weekly animal clinic is held in Port Elizabeth, Bequia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines.
Friends of Bequia Hospital was set up in 2013 to improve medical care on Bequia and supports the 3 medical facilities in Bequia: Bequia Hospital, Port Elizabeth Clinic, and Paget Farm Clinic. FOBH is administered by local Trustees and is reliant on donations of supplies and fundraising.
The first priority is to ensure that medication, frontline supplies and consumables are available to meet the ongoing needs of the people of Bequia. The ultimate goal of FOBH is to offer a centre of medical excellence, improving medical equipment and preventing the need for Bequia residents to travel to the island of St Vincent for medical care.
Bequia Reading Club was set up by Miss Cheryl Johnson, a former teacher, turned restaurant owner to help young people with their literacy. Local and visiting children of all ages gather every Saturday afternoon at The Fig Tree restaurant to read books with adult volunteers. Cheryl creates a great motivational learning environment, ensuring that each child participates, feeds back what they have read and gains from the experience. Each child can also choose a book at the end of each session to take home with them. Volunteers at the reading club are also very welcome and it is a hugely rewarding experience.
Listed on this page are the specific needs requested by the community project(s) so you can choose exactly what to pack for a purpose and express your gratitude to the local community with the supplies you take them. If you prefer, you may reach out directly to them to inquire about items which may be available for purchase locally. Arranging visits to community projects is beyond the scope of our mission. If you wish to visit a project, contact the participant and they can let you know what is possible.
Candy and balloons are not on the needs list as they are harmful for the children and the environment for the following reasons:
• Few of the children benefiting from these projects have access to toothpaste, toothbrushes, or a dentist. The candy promotes cavities.
• The balloons once they become deflated are a choking hazard for local wildlife.
Instead of taking candy or balloons, use that space for additional requested supplies, as they are priceless.