Published On: Wed, Feb 27th, 2013

St. Lucia Sickle Cell Association Celebrates

Melanius AlphonseCASTRIES, St Lucia -- The Saint Lucia Sickle Cell Association hosted its annual party recently at their headquarters. This event enabled contributors, volunteers and sickle cell patients to come together in fellowship. Participants took the opportunity to meet and greet, share clinical experiences, exchange gifts, have fun and games, and provide comfort from the daily struggles that sickle cell presents.

President Paula Calderon took the opportunity to express best wishes for the coming year and to offer her gratitude to the participants and volunteers who continue to give of their time and resources to sickle cell patients.

Calderon reminded participants that the association will continue to do its best to serve the interest of patients and families, and the less fortunate through a “coalition against poverty” in order to have a decent quality of life regardless of circumstance.

“We will remain committed to the best interest of sickle cell patients and in so doing we once again call on the policymakers to reconsider the implementation of value added tax (VAT) on medication due to the additional burden on poor families to purchase medication and meet routine medical treatment for their pain and daily suffering with sickle cell. We likewise call on the insurance companies to show concern and provide life insurance for sickle cell patients in the same manner that it is provided for other chronic diseases,” she said.

Calderon added, “We’re simply asking for the chance to afford sickle cell patient the ability to be self sufficient through equal opportunity and to provide for themselves and their families rather than live a life of deprivation and despair.

“To our contributors in Toronto, Canada, the Sickle Cell Miracle Network (SCMN) and the Jules Foundation (TJF), in the persons of Naomi Jules and Melanius Alphonse we remain very grateful for your generosity towards the Saint Lucia Sickle Cell Association. Your donation of educational toys, dry foods, remedial reading books, clothing and clinical supplies in December of 2012 and February 2013, is much appreciated and goes a long way towards meeting our patients’ requirements. We look forward to your continued support and that of Mr Ken Chitolie of KLC Freight in Toronto, Canada for his contribution in facilitating all of the freight and service cost of the two consignments we received.”

In closing, Calderon congratulated members of the Saint Lucia Sickle Association for a rewarding year of service. And as Saint Lucia celebrates 34 years of independence, the Association extended its warmest greetings to all Saint Lucians.

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