Naiesha Palmer

2011 Scholarship Recipient

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Naeisha Palmer has been described by her English Instructor at Pencader High School as ‘an academically gifted student, who has represented the school in extracurricular activities, as well as someone who possesses strong leadership skills.’ Naeisha was recently inducted into the high school’s chapter of the National Honor Society. While attending high school she was a member of PAL (Peers as Leaders), which matched an upperclassman with a freshman student. Naeisha was born in Jamaica and came to the US with her family at age 3. She grew up in Delaware. She has participated in a number of community service activities by volunteering at churches, food banks, clothes closets, libraries, and a hospice. Naeisha plans on giving back to Jamaica by working with the Jamaican Outreach Inc, an organization that helps by improving the lives of young people…

She was a member of the Business Professionals of America, and Students against Destructive Decisions (SADD). She also played Volley Ball and Soccer. Throughout her high school years Naeisha showed strong work ethic, a quiet strength, dedication, and determination, hence her success stories.

She graduated with a 3.83 GPA and is currently attending Hood College in Frederick MD where she is pursuing a degree in Elementary and Special Education.

History of TTCAD

History of Trinidad & Tobago Cultural Association of Delaware (TTCAD)

 

Ground Breaking

The year was 1999 and both the State of Delaware and the City of Wilmington were planning their year 2000 millennium celebrations as most cities and States. Out of such planning was born the Delaware Multicultural Education Council (DMEC), which brought together over twenty cultures from across the State, to present cultural programs so as to improve understanding among the diverse citizens of Delaware. DMEC, under the leadership of Chan Lee Pow, invited citizens from Trinidad & Tobago living in Delaware, to participate as one of Delaware’s cultures at the State’s Tall Ships 1999 extravaganza. The acceptance of DMEC’s invitation resulted in citizens from Trinidad & Tobago coming together and presenting various aspects of their country’s culture at the Tall Ships’ International Pavilion set up for DMEC. The working relation established at the Tall Ships’ International Pavilion in 1999 by these immigrants, was the ground-breaking act that brought together Delaware residents who migrated from Trinidad & Tobago.

The Foundation

Although an official operating structure and official name were not considered until 2006, the foundation for Trinidad & Tobago Cultural Association of Delaware (TTCAD) began taking hold from 1999 when families who migrated from Trinidad & Tobago came together to participate in DMEC’s cultural education programs. In addition, these families produced and presented annually, Trinidad & Tobago style carnival in the City of Wilmington, supported by family and friends from New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Washington and Canada. The teamwork from 1999 by the following families, was very influential in establishing the foundation which allowed TTCAD’s emergence. These families included: Hinds, Lee Pow, Lord, Ryan, Simpson, and Wilson. 

 

The Emergence

After operating under an unofficial name of Trinidad & Tobago Culture from 1999, participating mainly in DMEC’s cultural education programs and the City of Wilmington celebrations, the participating families worked with the necessary State & Federal authorities to officially establish a nonprofit {501 c (3)} operating structure. Thus emerged Trinidad & Tobago Cultural Association of Delaware (TTCAD) in 2006. Bonding of Leadership The period from 1999 to 2004 requires notable mention, since during that period the Trinidad & Tobago Cultural group, now officially called TTCAD, participated in events and programs that had great significance in the State of Delaware and strengthened teamwork among members.

 

Bonding of Leadership

These events and programs hosted mainly by DMEC with support from the communities; corporations; the Cities of Wilmington and Dover; and the State, included the following accomplishments by the Trinidad & Tobago Cultural group:

A. Recognized as a leading participant in the DMEC theatrical stage presentation titled “Cultural Tapestry” which raised $6,000 for the Red Cross.

B. Contributed cultural-education material of Trinidad & Tobago to two study guides which were distributed to Delaware schools. These study guides were prepared by DMEC in partnership with the State of Delaware Department of Education.

C. Participated and presented under DMEC’s cultural education programs, various aspects of Trinidad & Tobago culture. These DMEC programs were held at every major theatre and venue in the State of Delaware and were attended by over seven thousand students.

 

Journey after Official Formation

After receiving approval in 2006 from the Federal Government to operate as a nonprofit with 501 C (3) status, focusing on supporting education and charitable causes, TTCAD embarked on fulfilling its mission in Delaware, Trinidad & Tobago and other communities/countries requiring support. Since its official formation and through its fund-raising efforts which required a high level of commitment from Board members and supporting volunteers, the following are some of TTCAD’s achievements:

I. Provided thousands of dollars as university scholarships to children of Caribbean parentage fromBarbados, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Kitts/Nevis, Trinidad & Tobago, etc. (refer TTCAD website: www.ttcad.org.

II. Donated to Haitian relief through John Hopkins Hospital and the American Red Cross.

III. Donated to Ronald McDonald, Adopt-a-Family and others.

IV. Provided awards and educational tools to students from schools in Trinidad & Tobago.

 

Management

As a nonprofit with an all volunteer Board, and like any Federally approved nonprofit allowed by the IRS to operate for the benefit of and ownership by the public, TTCAD has experienced the movement of incoming and departing Board members. The rotation of Board members may be viewed by some as unhealthy for any business. However, such a rotation process is natural and more beneficial than detrimental. Movement of Board members allows for: (1) the introduction of new ideas, (2) a review and possible improvement of past practices by a fresh set of eyes, (3) compliance with Federal nonprofit laws, and (4) others. TTCAD’s successes from 1999 to 2010 were possible because of the following families who unselfishly volunteered their time, effort and resources to serve on the Board, some of whom are on the current Board: Agard, Berkeley-Ayres, Briggs, Charles, Hinds, Kirton, Lee Pow, Lord, Mitchell, Ryan, Simpson, Smart-Preston, and Wilson.

 

The Future

With a mission focused mainly toward education of Caribbean youth as approved by the Federal government, TTCAD’s success to date as witnessed at its 9/25/10 Scholarship Gala, is a testament of the reputation it has built with its supporters, sponsors, donors, and all others who are interested in youth development through higher education. TTCAD’s leadership is committed to the success of TTCAD’s mission, and makes every effort to manage TTCAD’s business with transparency and full accountability. There is an old saying: “The Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste.” TTCAD is making every effort to ensure that the minds of our youth are not wasted. With continued support from its supporters, sponsors, donors, and all others who are interested in youth development through higher education, TTCAD will continue to make a difference in the lives of many.

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TTCAD’s Core Values

The core values of TTCAD are the cornerstone of what TTCAD is and what TTCAD expects. These values are:

Highest ethical behavior

a. We conduct TTCAD’s business affairs to the highest ethical standards and will proactively comply with all applicable laws and TTCAD bylaws.

b. We work diligently to ensure that TTCAD remains a respected nonprofit citizen as authorized by the US Government/IRS.

Accountability

a. To fulfill TTCAD’s mission as a public organization, owned by the public and operated for the benefit of the public, we conduct TTCAD’s business affairs in ways that ensure transparency, full accountability and the highest level of integrity (refer some definitions below).

b. We monitor, update and implement appropriate controls and processes to ensure TTCAD maintains the highest level of credibility with the public and the Government bodies.

Loyalty, Independence & Mutual Respect

a. We conduct TTCAD’s business with full loyalty to TTCAD’s goals, objectives and mission in compliance with all laws, making decisions or taking positions acceptable to TTCAD as a nonprofit.

b. We conduct TTCAD’s business by applying the principles of independence and objectivity, valuing the benefits derived from diverse independent opinions.

c. We foster an environment in which everyone is treated with respect and dignity, sharing ideas, skills and talents for the realization of TTCAD’s objectives.

Definitions:

1. Transparency“Openness/honest” and “Uninhibited/Free” exchange of information in all communication and accountability. Transparent procedure/processes include open meetings, full disclosure at all times, budgets, audits, meeting minutes available to the public, etc. (i.e. A transparent object is one that can be seen through).

2. Full Accountability – The state of being accountable; liability to be called on to render an account; the obligation to accept the responsibility for failure to perform as expected.

Trishanna Punam Singh

2014 Scholarship Recipient

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Trishanna, a graduate of Middletown High School, is the daughter of Balwant and Liloutie Singh of Guyana.

Trish, as she is fondly called, has demonstrated academic excellence in her studies by achieving a 4.0 GPA. She was Honor Roll student throughout high school, and also was inducted into the National Honor Society. As one of her teacher put it, “Trish is one of the most hard-working students I had the opportunity of teaching in my sixteen year career.” Although Trish had a busy school schedule, she still found time to volunteer and to participate in extracurricular activities.

She spent time with the residents at the Ronald McDonald House; provided moral support for the Wounded Warriors at the National Naval Medical Center of Bethesda; and collected school supplies for needy children in the US and in Guyana. Trish also participated in her High School Swimming Team, Student Coordinator Club, Student Council, and the State Science Olympiad Team. Trish wants to be a Radiologist. She is enrolled in the 2-year Pace Program at Delaware Technical Community College af-ter which, she will transition to Thomas Jefferson Medical School to further her studies. Trish is centered, focused, and determined to achieve her goal, which is the early diagnosis of illnesses in the shortest time possible thereby saving lives.

Lackeeria Mackela Lewis

2014 Scholarship Recipient

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Lackeeria was born in Jamaica, West Indies. She loved school because she felt, “it was a place where teachers pushed us to do our very best, whether it was with a belt or ruler.” At the age of 11 years, Lackeeria migrated to the Philadelphia, USA.

The school she attended simply was not the same; teachers did not seem to care and doing homework or participating in extra-curricular activities was ridiculed by the students. As a result, her grades suffered. Fortunately, her dad Floyd Lewis, wanted a better life for his daughter and got her transferred to William Penn High School in Delaware, where she found nurturing teachers and students who had an interest in learning. She achieved and maintained a 3.0 GPA while participating in school activities and holding a part time job. As one teacher puts it: “Lackeeria is a young woman of outstanding character, leadership ability, and impeccable work ethic. She has consistently displayed the attitude, aptitude, and performance that are needed for success.”

She attends Delaware State University where she is majoring in English, and aspires to be a teacher. Her lifelong goal is to create a “Bridge Program” that would allow Caribbean children to obtain student visas to come to the US and obtain a college education. She believes that, education should not be compromised for not only is it strength and power, but most of all, it is individual freedom.

Amina Fayola DeVerteuil

2014 Scholarship Recipient

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Amina’s mother, Kathy is from Haiti, and her father, Richard is from Trinidad.

She is a Middletown High School graduate, with a 3.0 GPA, who has a clear sense of what she wants to accomplish in college as she pursues a degree in clinical psychology. She has challenged herself in high school by taking honors and AP level classes in psychology.

Amina is out-going and personable and sees the value in helping others. She applies her energy, enthusiasm, and time to community service. She has unselfishly volun-teered more than 75 hours with the Delaware Nature Society and the Ronald McDonald House.

Amina, who is very compassionate and works well with all type of people, is currently in the Associate in Arts Program at the University of Delaware, Dover Campus.

Lance Edwards

2011 Scholarship Recipient

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Lance’s paternal grandmother is from Trinidad and he is proud of the experience she shared with him and prouder yet of his father’s culture. Lance attended Polytech High School. In addition to receiving his high school diploma, he was awarded a Dental Radiology Certificate. He entered Delaware State University�s Early Bird Academic Student Program and was accepted into the SMILE – Science and Math Initiative for Learning Enrichment project as well as the Honors program. He has already earned 9 college credits. Lance hopes to intern during the summer of 2012 at a clinic in the Caribbean Islands, preferably in Trinidad. Lance’s high school counselor described that he watched Lance continue to mature into a fine young man as he participated in a number of leadership programs. Lance represented his high school as the Student Government Association Vice President and Skills USA team member. He is described as having exemplary time management skills and study habits as well as great maturity.

Lance has volunteered with the United Way of Delaware, and the Dover Air Force Base Youth Center Supreme Team. He also serves as local President of (EMBODI) Empowering Males to Build Opportunities to Develop Independence. He is certified in CPR and First Aid.

Lance earned a 3.0 GPA and is has a long term goal to be a Dentist.