Newsletter

Hello!
The Issa Trust Foundation’s Advisory Board is comprised of members selected for their recognized leadership, vision, integrity, and expertise in global health. Making measurable and sustainable advances in our pediatric, adolescent, and neonatal programs can be a challenge and requires a team of experts who share innovative ideas. Join us as we welcome our new and current advisory members. You can learn more about our team below.
Advisory Board Members:
Gary Anderson, 
Doctor of Optometry
Greg Anderson,
Connexin
Rob Barkema,
Biomedical Engineer
Dr. Krysten Chin MD,
MPH – Medical Advisor
Dr. Susan Kressly,
Medical Advisor
Sarah Meyer,
MSN, RN, CPN, CPNP-AC
Chris Panetta, Photographer/Videographer
Ewan D. A. Simpson,
Attorney-at-Law
Dr. Samantha Walker, B.Sc. (Hons), MBBS, DM (Paeds), MPH – Medical Advisor
Update On Noadiah Watson’s Story:
Diane Pollard, President & CEO shared, “I met Noadiah thru Keith Richards, the CEO of the St. Ann’s Bay Hospital at that time, who shared her story and then strongly encouraged me to view Kerlyn Brown’s segments on “Inspire Jamaica.” Mr. Richards then asked if I could use my network to help Noadiah reach her goals, after which I called the Shriners Hospital in Galveston, Texas to see if they would accept her as a patient. Noadiah, her mother, and her grandmother flew to Texas in October of 2012. The Chief Surgeon confirmed acceptance and said they would perform the required surgery and provide any necessary prosthesis until she is 18 years old. Noadiah’s goal was to be able to walk into her classroom instead of using her knees to get around.” 
Noadiah – 5 Years Old
Noadiah – Current
Michelle Mattis, Noadiah’s mother, shared, “Noadiah was born with a condition called “Phocomelia” or limb deformities. This condition, however, has never prevented her from excelling. After birth, Noadiah would move around on her knees but now wears a prosthetic leg to complete her daily tasks. In September, Noadiah will be 16 years old and a fourth-form student at the Westwood High School for Girls where she is doing extremely well. She has never allowed her challenges to get in the way of learning and is always striving for greatness. We want to thank the Issa Trust Foundation for their efforts in assisting her on this transformational journey. The sky is never the limit for us.”

Noadiah’s goal is to become an architect, hoping she will someday create her own invention! The Issa Trust Foundation focuses on measurable and sustainable programs in hopes of our youth reaching their goals and potential in life.
This year we are celebrating #GivingTuesday for an entire month.

Why? Because we need your support to help the children and families.

What’s our goal? To raise $17,000 for tablets for children in need.

How can I get involved? To support our #GivingTuesday campaign, simply click the donate button below and give what you can!
Thank you for your support!
Help us grow! If you know anyone that might support our cause, please share this email with them. It’s going to take a collective effort to meet our goal this year. THANK YOU to our loving community!
JAMAICAN SCHOOLS TO BE GIFTED GAME-CHANGING GRAPHOGAME APP
Kingston, Jamaica, September 24, 2021 – Having started its rollout in a few select schools in August of this year, other schools within Jamaica’s wider early childhood education system will soon have access to the Graphogame literacy app. Developed by linguists, neuropsychologists, and speech pathologists, Graphogame is the most-researched educational game, with proven efficacy in achieving basic literacy, equal to 1-to-1 teacher support, among children in the 4-9 age groups.

The app is a generous gift to Jamaican school children from Winsome Wishes for KIDS (WWKIDS) in NY, with the assistance of the United States-based Windward Institute. In Jamaica, the Issa Trust Foundation has generously partnered with WWKIDS for the app rollout and the attendant nationwide awareness campaign.
“The pilot rollout in Jamaica has demonstrated that this app can play a very important role in bridging gaps in our early childhood education system, which are now widening as a result of COVID-19,” said Simone Sobers, Founder of WWKIDS. “It is interactive, intuitive, and user friendly, and best of all, it is free. Once downloaded, it can be played without connectivity and data, which is significant at a time when children may have increased access to devices through several governmental and private sector initiatives, but still lack connectivity and have no access to data,” she continued.
The Issa Trust Foundation has expressed excitement at the rollout of the Graphogame in Jamaica. “This initiative is in clear alignment with our mission of community-building, providing resources for children to have access to education and promoting and improving health care and other services that increase the well-being and development of Jamaica. We are eager to get it in the hands of all children because we know that education is the foundation on which they will build the rest of their lives. We are happy to play a part in ensuring that this foundation is secure,” said Diane Pollard, President, and CEO of the Issa Trust Foundation.

The Graphogame app will be available as a free-to-download application in Jamaica, on iOS, Microsoft, and Android App Stores, starting in October. The donation of the app is a continuation of the work that WWKIDS has been doing in Jamaica over the last eighteen (18) months, which includes virtual workshops for teachers in Jamaica, and the donation of devices to schools and children in need.
We need your help! Currently, we are collecting tablets and donations to use towards purchasing new tablets. Any contribution is welcomed, and on behalf of the children who will be benefitting, we thank you for your generosity!
SUPPORT US EVERY TIME YOU SHOP ON AMAZON
AMAZONSMILE
Do you like shopping online? We would love your support! When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Issa Trust Foundation. Bookmark the link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-2173857 and share it with your network to support us every time you shop on Amazon. We thank you and the children thank you!
A MOTHER’S GRATITUDE
As schools in Jamaica closed due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, forcing education to go online, many students found themselves in the unfortunate position of not being able to continue their studies due to the unavailability of the necessary devices.

One such child was 8-year-old Trey, whose mother, Jovasha Hall, is a Bartender at Couples Negril. Trey could only share his father’s phone when he was not at work, causing him to have to almost completely abandon his schoolwork.

Thanks to the “Couples Cares” tablet drive, supported by so many of our generous guests, the Issa Trust Foundation was able to donate a Samsung Tablet to Trey to assist him with the continuation of his online classes.
His devoted mother, who is also an exemplary team member, expressed her gratitude for the donation and for the role of teachers, who she feels deserve a lot more credit. “The teachers deserve a gold medal. In pre-Pandemic times, kids were off to school and we as parents had no full understanding of the work entailed in their education.” Jovasha even finds herself monitoring his schoolwork during her lunch breaks at work from her phone.

Thanks to all those who donated and a special thank you to all the hands-on parents like Jovasha who are ensuring that our children are able to continue their education during these difficult times.
SHARING THE LOVE
COVID-19 is spreading across the country at an unprecedented speed. It is imperative that hospitals are provided with the necessary supplies to treat patients and to stop the spread of the virus. Couples Resorts cares about their community and knew it was important to offer their support. Therefore, we reached out to Partners For World Health to assist in providing critical supplies.

The week of August 23rd, Partners For World Health started packing a 40ft container of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), gloves, hand sanitizer, masks, isolation gowns, oxygen concentrators and so much more will be shipped on September 8th.

Without these critical supplies, medical providers cannot safely and effectively treat infected patients, which heightens the risk of spreading the virus.

Please consider supporting the Issa Trust Foundation and donate: https://issatrustfoundation.com/donate/
WE NEED YOUR HELP!
We are raising money to provide critical PPE/medical equipment to hospitals where the Couples Resorts employees work and live. We are also making it a point to continue our efforts in providing ongoing educational support for the children of Couples Resorts employees.
To help this ongoing effort, we have a brand new, beautiful collection of products that we are excited to release! Introducing the Collapsible Backpack Cooler Bag – available in red, blue and yellow.! This mesh backpack is perfect for the next outing to the beach or gym! The mesh upper compartment lets towels dry, while the zipper cooler below keeps food and beverages cold for hours! Available until 9/12.
We also have a new T-Shirt and Hat design that is available in various colors! Check them out below and click to order and support our cause!
***Campaign ends September 12th.***
Purchases and donations of any size are helpful. If you are not able to donate or purchase one of the new products, please consider using our Amazon Smile link the next time you are shopping on Amazon. See details below.
10 Liter Oxygen Concentrators Needed!
We are sourcing a critical need of 10 Liter Oxygen Concentrators for use in Jamaica. If you know of any companies or hospitals that would like to donate, please let us know. The need is great – thank you!

SUPPORT US EVERY TIME YOU SHOP ON AMAZON
AMAZONSMILE
Do you like shopping online? We would love your support! When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Issa Trust Foundation. Bookmark the link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-2173857 and share it with your network to support us every time you shop on Amazon. We thank you and the children thank you!
JOIN THE ONE LOVE COUPLES CARES CAMPAIGN!
Please join us in supporting the Issa Trust Foundation’s ONE LOVE SUMMER campaign, now through August 12th.  Live drawing will be held on Saturday, August 14th.

Your donations will go towards school supplies, critical medical equipment, and supplies. We hope you will join us in showing and sharing your love for Jamaica!

FOR EVERY US $50.00 DONATION, YOU WILL BE ENTERED TO WIN A GETAWAY FOR TWO AT THE ALL-INCLUSIVE COUPLES RESORT OF YOUR CHOICE.
Enter to win:
Go to https://bit.ly/2EVNmgA to donate US $50.00

Learn more about Couples Resorts: https://couples.com/
ROYAL CARIBBEAN GROUP, ISSA TRUST FOUNDATION, & COOL CHARITIES DONATE US $32,000 IN FOOD TO JAMAICAN CHARITIES!
Royal Caribbean Group partnered with the Issa Trust Foundation and Cool Charities to donate approximately US$32,000 worth of food items to Jamaican charities.

 The two containers of frozen and dry goods – including 4,750 kg of fish; 230 kg of rice; 680 kg of beans; 700 kg of vegetable oil; 1136 kg of flour; 57 cases of breakfast cereal and 16 cases of bread as well as utensils and sanitizing products and medications – were delivered to Bamboo Blu Restaurant in Ocho Rios for distribution to the various charitable organizations, homes, and hospitals on Wednesday, July 13.
Alex Ghisays, Public Relations Director for Issa Trust Foundation and Couples Resorts with the team
Preparing to unload a container of food
Some of these entities included the Correctional Services, Northeast Regional Health Authority (St. Ann’s Bay Hospital, Port Maria Hospital, and the Annotto Bay Hospital), Falmouth Hospital, Trelawny Infirmary, Widow’s Mite, Granville Child Care, Noah’s Ark Children’s Home, Our Lady of Fatima Church, Stand up for Jamaica and Widow’s Mite.

 “The Issa Trust Foundation is very happy to have facilitated this donation of food by Royal Caribbean Group to Jamaican entities in need of assistance, especially during the Covid 19 Pandemic, which has caused unprecedented hardship worldwide. We are also very grateful to Cool Charities for their assistance in this endeavour,” commented Paul Issa, Chairman of the Issa Trust Foundation and Deputy Chairman of Couples Resorts.
LEADING WITH LOVE WORLD’S IN GLOBAL HEALTH
Issa Trust Foundation Volunteer – Merrian J. Brooks, DO, MS
I am writing this from my new desk as the lead pediatrician and research director for the Botswana UPENN Partnership. Botswana, a country the size of the US state of Texas with a population of a little more than 2 million people is one of my global health homes. The other is Jamaica.

10 years ago I graduated from medical school and I have been reflecting on my journey in medicine. Unlike some, I didn’t always want to be a physician. I admired scientists like Mae Jamison and Marie Curie, women who changed the world with their scientific contributions. Then, as an undergraduate student, I discovered my passion for medicine during a study abroad semester in Ghana. I was a volunteer at the University of Ghana, Legon hospital. As an undergraduate student, I didn’t have any technical skills so I just got to know the hospital system and helped out where I could. I helped check people in (which was very humbling!), helped clean rooms, helped gather and organize supplies, even changing some bedpans! After doing this for several months I spent the last few weeks shadowing one of the only specialists in the hospital at the time (2004), a pediatrician. That’s when I decided I was going to be a physician. The world needed physicians and I could also change the world maybe not as a Nobel laureate or trailblazing astronaut, but in a smaller way, as a compassionate, committed, and qualified physician for the global underserved.

Click here to read the full article by Merrian J. Brooks.
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AMAZONSMILE
Do you like shopping online? We would love your support! When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Issa Trust Foundation. Bookmark the link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-2173857 and share it with your network to support us every time you shop on Amazon. We thank you and the children thank you!
A VIDEO FROM OUR REGGAE AMBASSADORS
Stephen ‘Cat’ Coore, Third World, shares a message and an appeal to corporations and organizations to give what support you can to support the Issa Trust Foundation’s programs.

Celebrating 47 years, THIRD WORLD is one of the longest-lived Reggae bands of all time, and one of Jamaica’s most consistently popular crossover acts among international audiences. Mixing in elements of R&B, funk, pop, and rock and, later on, dancehall and rap, Third World’s style has been described as “reggae-fusion”.
TOURISM IS ONE OF THE WORLD’S MOST IMPORTANT ECONOMIC SECTORS
How can supply keep up with demand for COVID-19 vaccines?
As noted by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, one year on from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic an unprecedented level of scientific collaboration and achievement has led to 11 vaccines being in clinical use around the world. Another 80 are in clinical trials. Yet while demand is sky-high (14 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccines are estimated to be needed by the end of 2021), scaling up manufacturing from zero to billions of doses was always going to be a considerable challenge. The current capacity for just COVID-19 is three times the annual 3.5 – 5.5 billion doses produced each year for all other vaccines combined.
The manufacture and quality control of a single batch of COVID-19 vaccine takes 3-4 months. Anywhere between 100 and 1,000 quality controls are done at each step of the manufacturing process. There is great inequality in the access to vaccines. Countries with the highest incomes are getting vaccines at a rate more than 30 times faster than those with the lowest income.
President of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA), Clifton Reader, says that more workers in the tourism industry are indicating a willingness to take the coronavirus (COVD-19) vaccine. Addressing an online forum on Friday (May 7), Mr. Reader said that “many persons, who had indicated that they would not take the vaccine or were undecided, had changed their mind after several thousand workers, employers and other stakeholders in the sector, received the jab during the last vaccination blitz.”

An earlier survey of 3,040 tourism employees, showed that 35% said they were ready to take the vaccine, 42% were unsure, and 23% said they would refuse the jab. “We have good reason to believe that 35% of the 42% who were sitting on the fence are now ready to take the vaccine. Another 10% of the 23% are also ready,” Mr. Reader said.
The reality is that everyone’s preference would be to go to destinations that have herd immunity to lessen the risk of them (contracting) COVID-19. This is the main reason we should educate our team members on the fact that vaccination could be a catalyst in the continued growth of the tourism sector.

Edmund Bartlett stated, “Jamaica projects that visitor arrivals will total close to 1.4 million in 2021. This breaks down to approximately 900,000 stay over arrivals and 500,000 cruise passengers. The heart of the global recovery rests on vaccinations to prevent transmission of the virus and make everyone feel safe,” he said.

“Travel helps us refresh, find our purpose, and put focus into our lives. For many we feel the more we got lost in our travels, the richer our lives became.”
TABLETS TO THE CHILDREN OF JAMAICA UPDATE!
Partnerships are key and we appreciate the generosity, love, and support by Lindsey Johnson and her family! Lindsey shares her love for Couples Resorts, the children, and how her family helps make a difference.
Fifteen years ago when I began working as an independent travel advisor, I had no idea of the transformative role that Jamaica and its people would have on my life. My name is Lindsey Johnson and I own Tropics Travel Agency based in Paducah, Kentucky USA. I have been a travel advisor for 15 years and have had a strong focus on Jamaica tourism since I first began.

My husband, Scott, and I were married at Couples Resort in Negril. Several years later, after we had our first child, I transitioned from being a chemical engineer to a full-time mother. This change gave me the time to focus my energy on my passion for travel. Through a lot of hard work and with some good luck, my travel business grew rapidly. I was fortunate to discover Couples Resorts early in my travel career and I was naturally drawn to encourage my clients to visit Jamaica and stay at a Couples Resorts property.
It was through working with Couples where I learned about the work of the Issa Trust Foundation. Fast forward 9 years, my husband and I are blessed to have three healthy and energetic children – Catcher (9), Evelyn (6), and Nathaniel (4). Like all parents, we want to give our children the best of everything. We want them to succeed in all they do and we work hard to ensure they have the resources needed to be happy and successful. As my business grew and I met and worked with others who are passionate about Jamaica, I realized what a powerful influence I might be for Jamaican families and children if I introduced my friends and clients to the work and impact of the Issa Trust Foundation.
Recently ITF had a fundraiser to supply iPads to children of Couples Resorts employees. When I learned there were families who applied for a tablet but didn’t receive one due to a funding shortage, I set a personal goal to raise the funds needed so every parent who applied could provide that tool to their child. Through selfless donations of clients and several raffles, I was able to secure funding to purchase the additional tablets! I’m not sure what our next goal with ITF will be, but I don’t plan to stop doing what I can to help where I’m needed!
We want to send the most heartfelt thank you to Lindsey and her supportive family!
If you or your company would like to partner to help the children and families in Jamaica, please contact Diane Pollard. Diane.Pollard@issatrustfoundation.com
SUPPORT US EVERY TIME YOU SHOP ON AMAZON
AMAZONSMILE
Do you like shopping online? We would love your support! When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Issa Trust Foundation. Bookmark the link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-2173857 and share it with your network to support us every time you shop on Amazon. We thank you and the children thank you!
NHF Receives Needed Pharmaceutical Drugs
The National Health Fund (NHF) has acquired pharmaceutical drugs and supplies valued at US $900,000 geared towards boosting inpatient and outpatient care across Jamaica. The donation consisted of intravenous fluids and over 4,000 drug supplies that help treat cancer, hypertension, and hyperthyroidism.
From left to right, are NHF Chairman, Howard Mitchell, Chairman of the Issa Trust Foundation, Paul Issa, NHF CEO, Everton Anderson, and Senior Director of Pharmacy Services Delivery, Keron Mais
Howard Mitchell, the NHF Chairman, said, “If we do not stand together, we will fall apart; this is a representation of the kind of partnership that comes up with a meaningful result for all of us. I want to thank Direct Relief, the Issa Trust Foundation, and the staff of the NHF for the kind of work that they do now in these very challenging times.”

The Issa Trust Foundation thanks our partner Direct Relief for making this US$900,000 donation to the NHF possible. Special thanks to Ms. Genevieve Bitter for her continued support.

THE GIFT OF SIGHT
Erik’s prescription was a minus 15 power which means Erik could only see clearly 2 inches from his face. His distance acuity was 20/2000 which means for far away objects they had to be a hundred times bigger or he had to be a hundred times closer in order for him to see it. With his new glasses, Erik is now able to see at 20/20. Generous hearts paid for a second set of glasses for Erik in the event that they were ever lost or broken. Many thanks to the Michigan and Iowa Lions and volunteers! We hope you can take the time to read Erik’s letter in his own words below.
I will be forever grateful to the Issa Trust Foundation for helping me to overcome my challenges and I am proud to say that I may lack sight but not vision!

My name is Erik Murray I am 16 years old; I attend the Godfrey Stewart High School. I write this letter as a means to express my gratitude to every member of the Issa Trust Foundation that came together and helped me when I needed it the most. In life, we all are faced with challenges and I was faced with the reality of having poor sight. I am extremely nearsighted; I am unable to see smaller objects that are not directly up to my face and anything further than that is just so blurry. Under those conditions going to school would be pointless because I wouldn’t be able to see the work being done, nor able to read or write notes or complete my assignments which would put me at a major disadvantage.

The only ray of hope I have is to wear glasses in order to overcome these challenges but that is easier said than done because my range of glasses are by far the most expensive which simply means it was more than I could afford. I didn’t know where that money was coming from and regardless, I was still deeply in need of glasses in order to efficiently enroll in school, and because of my disadvantage, I honestly was starting to get stressed.
Back By Popular Demand!
We hope you love the Embroidered Twisted Palm hats in 6 beautiful colors just in time for summer! Due to popular demand, we are opening the campaign until Sunday, May 23rd. Get yours today!

We are raising money to provide neonatal and pediatric medical supplies to hospitals where the Couples Resorts employees work and live. The hospitals are in dire need of the supplies and hope you will consider supporting this fundraising campaign.
Then came what I describe as a true blessing, something amazing happened! I got called to my principal’s office only to hear the good news that I was being sponsored a pair of glasses specially made for me!  I felt so blessed and lucky to receive such help in my time of need.  I was able to efficiently manage and improve my academic performance by a significant mark and I started to set goals and went on to achieve them. I even enrolled in the June 2019-2020 CSEC examinations and passed all three of the CSEC subjects that I enrolled in and I did so in the 10th grade now I am in 11th grade preparing to do six or more CSEC subjects for the 2020-2021 examinations. I am working to achieve my biggest academic goal which is to go to University and complete my studies in psychology and entrepreneurship. Thanks to Issa Trust Foundation I am now able to move forward to the next stage in my academic journey. THANK YOU FOR CONTRIBUTING TO MY SUCCESS.
LIONS OF MICHIGAN VISION MISSION TEAM
PARTNERING WITH THE ISSA TRUST FOUNDATION
2013 was the first year our Lions of Michigan Vision Mission Team partnered with the Issa Trust Foundation to bring much needed vision care to the school children of Jamaica. Lions Clubs International is the largest service organization in the world with 1.4 million members in 209 countries, with a worldwide mission of “We Serve”.
Our Lions Vision Mission team was started in 1992 by Dr. Dennis Cobler, initially making a yearly mission to Central America. Eyeglasses are collected by Lions members throughout the State of Michigan and brought to our recycling center. Here, every pair of glasses is inspected for damage or scratches, and the “keepers” are washed, dried, and then measured for their prescription. The unusable glasses are sent to a recycling center where the plastic and metal are completely recycled. Nothing is wasted. The clean/measured glasses are placed in a plastic bag with the prescription inscribed on a label.
On the mission site, the patients have their eyes screened by an auto-refractor that measures their prescription and eye alignment objectively. The patient then sees the eye doctor, using this electronic screening as a starting point and then further examining the patient’s eyes for more precise prescription needs and complete eye health.
If glasses are needed, the prescription is entered into the computer program and the closest used glasses we have to that prescription are given to the patient. The glasses are adjusted on each patient’s head along with education on when to wear them and how to care for the glasses. If we do not have glasses close to the proper prescription, we have the patient select a new frame and we have the glasses made in the US. The finished, brand new glasses are then sent back to the patient through the Issa Trust Foundation. Click here to read the entire article.
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AMAZONSMILE
Do you like shopping online? We would love your support! When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Issa Trust Foundation. Bookmark the link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-2173857 and share it with your network to support us every time you shop on Amazon. We thank you and the children thank you!
WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER
Her Excellency Lady Allen and Usain Bolt
Partner WITH US!
When your business finds ways to give back, everybody benefits. Proven commitment to a cause improves public image, brand awareness, and inspires employees. By supporting the Issa Trust Foundation, your partnership will help impact lives in a sustainable and measurable way. We help create a better world by mobilizing volunteers, health workers, and entrepreneurs for the children and families in Jamaica.

Photo Description: Pictured are Lady Allen, Patron of the Foundation, and Usain Bolt, eight-time Olympic gold medalist. We are so grateful to them for partnering with us.!
Partnering With Us Helps Everyone!

  • MAKE AN IMPACT: We will work with your business to create a partnership plan that reflects your corporate interests.

  • EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT: Connect your employees to the cause through fundraising and workplace giving.

  • CAUSE MARKETING: Increase sales, build brand awareness and demonstrate your commitment to mobilizing individuals. Initiatives may include donation with purchase and/or hosting fundraising events for customers.

  • EVENT SPONSORSHIP: Reach new and engaged audiences by sponsoring an event and help build community involvement. Possible events include a community ride, panel discussion, or galas.

  • FIELD PROGRAM SPONSORSHIP: Work with us to make a direct impact in the field by funding innovative programs such as: educational programs, expanding and building of schools, building of a new pediatric clinic, and healthcare initiatives just to name a few.

  • STRATEGIC PARTNERS: Strategic partnerships align long-term corporate giving with multi-year, joint program development. These partnerships may include launching new initiatives, implementing new developments, and funding programs of excellence.

*If you or your company would like to partner to help the children and families in Jamaica, please contact Diane Pollard. Diane.Pollard@issatrustfoundation.com
Biomedical Engineering
School Programs
Pediatric Health Initiatives
TESTIMONIAL BY CHRIS PANETTA, ONE OF OUR LONG TERM VOLUNTEERS
Chris Panetta with children at Freehill Primary School
“I encourage you all, no matter what cause you choose to support, to consider being a force of positive change in the lives of others less fortunate. Reach out, volunteer your time, your skills, your knowledge and your resources for the betterment of the next person. I assure you no matter how slight the gesture of kindness it can come back to you tenfold and change your life in ways you could never imagine possible and most certainly result in a change in the lives of others forever.”Chris Panetta, Photographer/Videographer
From the very first moment we set foot in Jamaica we were awestruck with the beauty of the island, its culture, vibe, and most of all the warmth of its people.

Like many, our early visits were pretty much confined to soaking up the sunshine, tranquility and taking in the laid-back vibe of the beautiful resorts on the island. We discovered Couples Resorts on our second trip to the island and, from that moment, we knew we had discovered something truly unique and special – a place that we would long to return to year after year for over 15 years now. Our desire to return to this incredible slice of heaven only intensified as the years went on often returning “Home” two, sometimes even three, times a year when possible. Being an avid photographer, my visual senses often would go into overdrive during our trips as it seemed everywhere I turned or looked there was something of beauty or interest that I felt compelled to capture for personal remembrances and to share with others (read the entire article here).
Photo by Chris Panetta Freehill Primary School 2015
If you or your company would like to partner to help the children and families in Jamaica, please contact Diane Pollard. Diane.Pollard@issatrustfoundation.com
ISSA TRUST FOUNDATION – A LIFELINE FOR OUR KIDS!
Growing up in rural Jamaica, a lot of our people accepted that there are just some things that were not going to be a part of our world. Our low socio-economic state was accepted as the reality in which we live and may die. It did not occur to some of us that if a simple piece of equipment was available at the hospital in the parish capital, our young kids would be more certain to stay alive. That was beyond our awareness. For some education was always seen as a lucrative path forward. However, we were always falling behind as technology dictated the pace of progress, and
Wayne Williams
we were not equipped to keep in step. The Covid 19 pandemic blew up a lot of hope and threatened to set us back even further. Our internal survey indicated that 90% of our kids were taking classes with parent’s cell phones – when it could be spared!

Then came the Issa Trust Foundation and all our donors, throwing a lifeline. Not only equipping our rural hospitals – saving lives, but also placing in the hands of our children basic tools – Tablets Of Hope.

Our appreciation goes deep and will remain.
Mr. Wayne Williams, General Manager
Couples Tower Isle
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AMAZONSMILE
Do you like shopping online? We would love your support! When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Issa Trust Foundation. Bookmark the link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-2173857 and share it with your network to support us every time you shop on Amazon. We thank you and the children thank you!
TABLETS TO THE CHILDREN OF JAMAICA: UPDATES
With Schools closed and virtual education becoming a way of life during the Covid-19 Pandemic, Issa Trust Foundation, the non-profit arm of Couples Resorts, realized that many students were being left behind due to lack of a device in order to participate in class or do homework.  After partnering with Seprod Foundation and American Friends of Jamaica (AFJ) to donate tablets to children in Jamaica, the Foundation decided to also assist the children of the staff of Couples Resorts who were experiencing hardships obtaining access to online education.

An online Raffle was organized for a five-night stay at a Couples Resort and the response from generous Couples guests was phenomenal! The Foundation was able to raise enough funds to purchase forty-three 8” Samsung tablets for each Resort, totaling 172 tablets, at a cost of approximately US $29,000. These tablets, along with sim cards donated by DIGICEL, were distributed to line staff members through an interview process. We are also thankful to The Bridge of Life who donated Samsung tablets along with cases valued at US $7,200. “Bridge of Life is proud to support Issa Trust Foundation’s wonderful initiative to help children keep up with their studies during the pandemic,” stated Lori Vaclavik, Executive Director, Bridge of Life.
“This initiative to raise funds for the purchase of tablets for the children of our employees was funded by contributions from the loyal guests of Couples Resorts, whose donations, big and small, allow us to do the work we do. We are immensely grateful to them,” stated Paul Issa, Chairman of the Issa Trust Foundation.
TAKING CARE OF THE TINIEST PATIENTS
Optimal feeding of very low birth weight infants in resource-limited settings is critical to reducing high mortality and poor outcomes. Early nutrition impacts multiorgan developmental patterning, immune, cardiac and respiratory function, and longer-term cognitive outcome as well as a range of chronic conditions such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease in adulthood which place a substantial burden on healthcare systems.

Knowing these facts, Kerri Cook, RN, Issa Trust Foundation Nursing Advisory Board member, went right to work to source neonatal feeding tubes again this year to help the neonates in Jamaica. The partnership with Ms. Laurie Wear, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Nebraska Medicine, was key! They donated hundreds of feeding tubes and oral enteral syringes, surgically placed feeding tubes, connectors, and so much more! More donations were packed from generous additional donors for Sav La Mar, St Ann’s Bay, and Annotto Bay Hospitals. Total value US $64,314.21!
Neonatal Feeding Tubes
“We are grateful for the visionary partnership we have with the Issa Trust Foundation which has consistently bolstered our mandate holistic health, over the years. We appreciate the extra effort and support by the Foundation to gift medical sundries and personal protective equipment (PPEs) as we respond to the dynamics of the Covid-19 pandemic in our Region.

 The benefactors of this significant donation are not just the residents of St. Ann, St. Mary, and Portland but include residents of adjoining parishes which are served by our 4 hospitals, 2 community hospitals, and 73 health centers.

Our sincere thank you to the Issa Trust Foundation.”
-Management and staff of NERHA
If you or your company would like to partner to help the children and families in Jamaica, please contact Diane Pollard. Diane.Pollard@issatrustfoundation.com
Exciting Offer – Ends April 11, 2021!
  • Campaign ends: April 11, 2021.
  • Estimated delivery date: April 27, 2021.
  • Ships to Canada & the UK (rates may vary)
We hope you love the Embroidered Twisted Palm hats with a variety of beautiful colors just in time for summer! We are raising money to provide neonatal and pediatric medical supplies to hospitals where the Couples Resorts employees work and live. The hospitals are in dire need of the supplies We hope you will consider supporting this fundraising campaign!
NOADIAH’S JOURNEY SINCE SHE WAS FIVE YEARS OLD
A story by Noadiah’s mother, Michelle Mattis
Noadiah Watson was born with phocomelia. At the age of five, she had a dream of being able to physically walk into her classroom. After several surgeries at Shriners in Houston, Texas, her dream came true. Read the full story below!
It is said that the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.
Twelve years ago I gave birth to a beautiful little girl who was named Noadiah Adreana Watson. Noadiah was born with congenital deformities or a condition called Phocomelia. She had two fingers and six toes. Noadiah, given her condition, accepted herself for who she was. From a very young age, she had to be carried by her parents or with the help of a stroller. This was because her only means of getting about was on her knees. This still did not prevent her from excelling in school; she was a kindergarten student who aimed for excellence. She was born with only two fingers, but her handwriting was neat and her letters were beautifully formed. After kindergarten, she moved on to grade one where she continued to excel. She was placed on the principal’s honour roll for six consecutive years. Her teachers were always amazed at how dedicated and focused she was. Noadiah’s “always eager to learn more” attitude was contagious, oftentimes pushing those around her to study harder and really focus on schoolwork, as failure was never an option for her. She has a kind heart and never thinks of herself as alone. To this day, she refuses to let her disabilities prevent her from doing what she wants. If you tell her she can’t, she’s going to challenge you back and prove you wrong. She’ll never stop trying until she overcomes the challenge and accomplishes the task at hand.

I must say thanks to the Issa Trust Foundation for being there. Without them, she would not be able to move around on her feet instead of her knees. I thank all her cheerleaders as she transitions into high school. She will hopefully one day fulfill her dream of becoming a medical doctor to help the children who are in need. I leave you with a quote from Mahatma Gandhi; “Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.”

-Michelle Mattis (Mother)
SUPPORT US EVERY TIME YOU SHOP ON AMAZON
AMAZONSMILE
Do you like shopping online? We would love your support! When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Issa Trust Foundation. Bookmark the link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-2173857 and share it with your network to support us every time you shop on Amazon. We thank you and the children thank you!

CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

 

 

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) or conscious capitalism is a developing philosophy that whether by happenstance, or cultural design is almost organically aligned with the business philosophies of the House of Issa.

 

The precepts of CSR have driven the establishment of our Foundation and continue to guide and shape the organizational behavior and management style of our stakeholders.

 

By involving our guests and suppliers in the charitable outreach of the foundation, we hope to increase mindfulness of our shared humanity and to encourage the values of consideration and empathy for every single human being.

 

Our focus on the health of our less fortunate citizens goes to the heart of mankind’s need to nourish the soul by caring for the bodies of our suffering brothers and sisters.

Howard Mitchell, Director

Issa Trust Foundation

 

Over the years, the Issa Trust Foundation has quietly assumed the role of the premier private benefactor of several of our Jamaican hospitals and has done so largely through the generosity of the guests of our hotels and the support of other global charities which see our integrity and efficient delivery of critical aid.

 

We are now tested by a global pandemic which threatens the source of some of that support and at the worst possible time for the needy beneficiaries of our help. We are now more in need of your thoughtful kindness than ever before in order to continue our work and to exalt the human spirit through compassionate healthcare.

 

Our work in these perilous times will define the quality of our humanity for the future and strengthen the bonds of our shared values . As Jamaicans, we are grateful for your support in the past and look forward to your help now and in the future.

Commentary by: Howard Mitchell

 

 

 

 

WHAT WE’VE BEEN UP TO

 

In response to Covid-19, the Issa Trust Foundation partnered with Partners for World Health and Eric Clarke, Chairman, Western Regional Health Authority, to deliver a 40 ft. container valued US $300,000 of medical equipment and supplies consisting, in part, of PPE, ventilators, beds, defibrillators, ECG machines, ultra sound machines, and so much more.

 

For 40 foot container article

Unloading a medical bed from the container

For 40 Ft Container article

Ventilator being rolled into the hospital

 

 

Elizabeth McLellan, RN, President & Founder, stated “Partners for World Health (PWH) is beyond grateful for our new partnership with the Issa Trust Foundation! Together we can increase the number of lives touched by our aligned missions. Without partnerships like this, PWH would not have the impact for which our organization, as a whole, was intended. We look forward to an ongoing relationship, and future container shipments and medical mission trips to help those in need in Jamaica.” 

Elizabeth McLellan, RN

 

 

Through the generosity of our donors, our work continued at Annotto Bay Hospital in St. Mary. In addition to the donation of the portable x-ray and new digital x-ray system, we also donated five viewing stations which were placed in the emergency department as well as the pediatric, surgical, and men’s and women’s wards. The total value of the donation was US $43,975.00.

 

Learning to use the new digital x-ray machine

 

 

Kerri Cook

In August, Kerri Cook, RN, Advisory Board member, was able to collect pediatric and neonatal medical supplies, itemized, and packed a pallet for delivery to Annotto Bay Hospital valued at US $10,154.52. Our journey to supply the hospital with much needed medical equipment and supplies continues.

 

 

Thank you, Direct Relief, for your generous donation of pharmaceutical medications valued at US $501,001.10 to the National Health Fund. The medications are distributed to hospitals and health centers at no cost to those in need. We are thankful for their partnership and for joining us in our mission to improve the quality of life for the children and families in Jamaica.

 

 

Dr. Glenton Strachan, Senior Medical Officer stated, “The Annotto Bay Hospital medical staff is greatly appreciative to the Issa Trust Foundation for the donation of a state-of-the-art digital x-ray system with currently five viewing stations. 

 

The introduction of this digital technology has transformed radiology not only at the Annotto Bay Hospital but the entire community of St. Mary who depend on the hospital for radiological services. 

 

The significantly improved clarity of digital images as compared to the previous analog technology, has greatly assisted the clinician’s ability to accurately diagnose diseases. This along with real-time processing of images has led to significantly faster turnover times of results leading to decreased patient waiting times both in the x-ray department and review by the requesting physicians.

Dr. Glenton Strachan, Senior Medical Officer

 

Patients from the community now have the luxury of traveling with a small compact disc (CD) to take to their doctors which is easily hidden, rather than the previous large analog films which were easily identifiable and lacked privacy.

 

The hospital has seen significant savings on a monthly basis in the order of approximately $325,000 JMD per month due to the removal of the dark room which required chemicals and additional staff for processing the films.

 

These advantages of the digital x-ray system continue to positively impact the staff and patients of the Annotto Bay Hospital and the parish of St. Mary; as we strive to provide accurate, efficient diagnostic investigations.

 

We are thankful to the Issa Trust Foundation for their continued support to the improvement in the health of the citizens of St. Mary. This recent donation of a digital x-ray system stands as a testament to their commitment to the technological advancement in healthcare delivery at the Annotto Bay Hospital."

 

 

 

DONATE TODAY

 

The mission of the Foundation is to provide a system of prevention, health promotion and education, community health improvement and other services to promote well-being and development for the people of Jamaica.

 

 

 

 

We are extremely thankful for the support and donations that came through for our last fundraiser that closed on September 15th! The amount of love that comes to our community, especially during uneasy times, is sometimes hard to believe. And for that, we thank you!

 

We had a blast reading all of your comments expressing how much you love Jamaica, the people that live there, and the friends you have met at Couples Resorts. With your support, we raised US $4,049.07!

 

The Jamaica designed face mask was created by artist, Aubin Dunkley.

 

 

 

 

NOADIAH’S JOURNEY SINCE SHE WAS FIVE YEARS OLD

A story by Noadiah’s mother, Michelle Mattis

 

 

It is said that the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

Twelve years ago I gave birth to a beautiful little girl who was named Noadiah Adreana Watson. Noadiah was born with congenital deformities or a condition called Phocomelia. She had two fingers and six toes. Noadiah, given her condition, accepted herself for who she was. From a very young age, she had to be carried by her parents or with the help of a stroller. This was because her only means of getting about was on her knees. This still did not prevent her from excelling in school; she was a kindergarten student who aimed for excellence. She was born with only two fingers, but her handwriting was neat and her letters were beautifully formed. After kindergarten she moved on to grade school, where she continued to excel. She was placed on the principal’s honour roll for six consecutive years. Her teachers were always amazed at how dedicated and focused she was. Noadiah’s "always eager to learn more" attitude was contagious, often times pushing those around her to study hard and really focus on school work because failure was never an option for her. She refused to let her disabilities prevent her from doing what she wanted. If you tell her she can’t, she’s going to challenge you back and prove you wrong. She’ll never stop trying until she overcomes the challenge.

 

I must say thanks to the Issa Trust Foundation for being there. Without them, she would not be able to be moving around on her feet instead of her knees. I thank all her cheerleaders as she transitions into high school. She will hopefully one day fulfill her dream of becoming a medical doctor to help the children who are in need. I leave you with a quote from Mahatma Gandhi; "Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will."

 

 

 

 

 

SUPPORT US EVERY TIME YOU SHOP ON AMAZON

 

 

 

AMAZONSMILE

 

Do you like shopping online? We would love your support! When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of the purchase price to Issa Trust Foundation. Bookmark the link http://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-2173857 and share it with your network to support us every time you shop on Amazon. We thank you and the children thank you!

 

THIRD WORLD JOINS ISSA TRUST FOUNDATION AS GOODWILL REGGAE AMBASSADORS
A Message From Diane Pollard, President & CEO
It is fitting that, on the Anniversary of last year’s very successful fundraising concert ‘An Evening with Air Supply and Third World’ featuring Koffee, that the hosts of the event, the Issa Trust Foundation – the non-profit arm of Couples Resorts Jamaica – is announcing that the legendary Third World has come on board as Goodwill Reggae Ambassadors for the Foundation as they continue the work being done to enrich the lives of children in Jamaica.

Celebrating 46 years, Third World is one of the longest-lived Reggae bands of all time and one of Jamaica’s most consistently popular crossover acts among international audiences. Their style has been described as “reggae-fusion.” With 9 Grammy nominations and a catalogue of charted smash hits, including “Now That We Found Love”, “96 Degrees in the Shade” and “Try Jah Love”, spanning over four decades, sold-out tours, a vibrant and loyal fan base and inspirational messages, Third World is more than just one of the top Reggae Bands of all time, it is an institution whose themes are positive, progressive and internationally relevant.
“This is Stephen Cat Coore of Third World and it is a great honor, a great pleasure to be associated with the Issa Trust Foundation as their Goodwill Reggae Ambassadors. The Issa Trust Foundation has done some wonder work for some very, very, young children in the pediatric hospital in St Ann’s’ Bay, It has shown me more than any other time right now in this terrible crisis of Covid 19 what a great thing it is when people get together and do stuff for people that are poor, dispossessed and genuinely need help. Even before the virus became what it is today, the Issa Trust Foundation went beyond their means to help the poor and dispossessed people of Jamaica and sets an example for people all over the world. We are honored to be a part of their team. We performed last year with Air Supply and Koffee and it was successful. We look forward to the day we can perform again – things are very hard in the music business now and whatever we can do, whatever part we can play to help in any way mankind and humanity we will definitely be doing it. So, the Issa Trust Foundation association with Third World is just one way in which we intend to spread our wings, spread the love and make sure that we play apart in humanity. This is a crisis time for the world, and I’m asking everyone to give what support you can to the Issa Trust Foundation, to our efforts, and to stay safe and more than anything, in this time be kind to your fellow man.”
Paul Issa, Chairman of the Issa Trust Foundation, commented “I am thrilled that the Third World has agreed to be Goodwill Reggae Ambassadors for the Issa Trust Foundation! I’ve been a fan of theirs since the 1970’s and lead singer AJ Brown actually began his career at Couples, so we share a lot of history. We are grateful for the interest they have taken in our work and I think this is going to be a long and beautiful friendship.”
DONATE TODAY
The mission of the Foundation is to provide a system of prevention, health promotion and education, community health improvement and other services to promote well-being and development for the people of Jamaica.
A BIG HELLO TO THE COUPLES COMMUNITY!
Even though we can’t see you right away, we are looking forward to the day we can welcome you home, to Couples Resorts. The Issa Trust Foundation and Couples Resorts have been busy! Couples continues to work on keeping the resort fresh and presentable while keeping their staff safe and protected. We, with the help of Couples Resorts, have been providing the local caregivers and hospitals medical equipment, personal protection, ventilators, portable x-rays, intensive care monitors, etc. to make sure they are equipped with the tools they need to help Jamaica fight this pandemic. Be sure to watch the short video below and donate to our cause so we can continue to help Jamaica fight this global pandemic.
About the Foundation
Issa Trust Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation
The mission of the Foundation is to provide a system of prevention, health promotion and education, community health improvement and other services to promote well-being and development for the people of Jamaica.
PREVIOUS NEWSLETTER

MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN JAMAICA ONE STEP AT A TIME

A Message From Diane Pollard, President & CEO

 

COVID-19 is wreaking havoc across the world. Jamaica will not be spared and with deep concern for the health and well-being for the people of Jamaica, The Issa Trust Foundation is doing their part. As of March 1, 2020, Issa Trust Foundation and partners have donated US $1,599,732.01 of PPE, ventilators, medical equipment, pharmaceutical supplies and much more! This is a very stressful time, but it is important for us to remain positive, remain resilient, and to do our part to make a difference. Please, if you can, help our cause by making a donation:

 

 

DONATE TODAY

 

The mission of the Foundation is to provide a system of prevention, health promotion and education, community health improvement and other services to promote well-being and development for the people of Jamaica.

 

RECENT UPDATES

Digital X-Ray enhances care and lowers wait times for patients and physicians

Rob Barkema Digital X-Ray

Over the last several years the Issa Trust Foundation, with the help of Robert Barkema, Corporate Officer, Radiology Imaging Solutions, Inc. Grand Rapids, Michigan, has been helping to convert several of our hospitals to the latest in digital imaging technology.

 

The use of digital imaging allows the x-ray technologist to obtain much higher quality photos a lot faster. Plus, the patient spends far less time in the x-ray department waiting for the images to be processed. Digital images are then stored on a computer using sophisticated PACS software. Once the images are stored they can be viewed on any computer within the facility. This means that the doctors in the operating theatre, pediatrics, emergency departments, etc., can see the x-ray images on the computer instead of having to go to the x-ray department to see them. The images can also be viewed by a specialist located outside of the medical facility using encrypted software over the internet.

Falmouth Hospital Goes Digital to Reduce Wait Times for Patients

Falmouth Hospital

For the past year, the We Care – FPGH Ltd (charity for the Falmouth Hospital) has partnered closely with The Issa Trust Foundation (the nonprofit arm of Couples Resorts) to secure the purchase of a Digital X-Ray system for the Radiology Department. Together they have raised USD $100,000 towards an Evo View PACS System with a Fuji CR and accessories.

 

The Falmouth Hospital is the only secondary care facility in Trelawny. Falmouth and its vicinity has had a population growth of 25% with the boom of housing units over the past five years. The number of hotels rooms in the parish also continues to grow along with the cruise ship passengers from the Falmouth port.

 

Working closely together, The Issa Trust Foundation and the We Care – FPGH Ltd (the charity organization for the Falmouth Hospital) partnered in raising funds and finding donors to purchase the PACS System. Through the generosity of donors, the following organizations are gratefully acknowledged for their support:

The American Friends of Jamaica

National Health Fund

Tourism Enhancement Fund

The Issa Trust Foundation

Chukka Foundation

We Care FPGH Ltd

Private Donors

Lowering Mortality Rates Through our Biomedical Engineering Programs

Chad Mann, Owner of Med-Tech Support Services, Inc. is honored to be a part of an organization who works so tirelessly for the betterment of Jamaica’s children. Like any purchasing process, we must assess options prior to making a purchase. We must consider the equipment’s ability to effectively perform and its continued durability. We strive to standardize equipment across the hospital system. Likewise, the ease of

maintaining the equipment is important. And of course, a huge factor in purchasing any piece of equipment is its cost.

Standardization of Equipment

Procuring standardized equipment that can be used throughout Jamaica’s hospital systems is pivotal. It allows hospitals that Issa Trust is a part of to share staff, maintenance and patient disposables. Trained doctors, nurses and maintenance staff can ease transitions when sharing between hospitals.

 

How does the Issa Trust Foundation determine which neonatal and pediatric ventilators to procure for the children of Jamaica? Performance, maintenance, standardization and cost are Issa Trust’s determinants. However, the machine’s ability to save the lives of Jamaica’s future leaders, doctors, teachers, nurses, hospitality employees, store clerks, and manufacturers is our #1 goal.

 

Performance and Maintenance

What is the maintenance schedule and costs for the machine? Can parts be sourced quickly to keep the machine running? How long will the manufacturer support the machine with service parts? Training for the hospital bio-medical technicians is paramount in purchasing and thus maintaining the new piece of equipment. Technicians need to be able to perform preventative maintenance and replace components that may break due to normal wear and tear.

 

Standardization of Equipment

Procuring standardized equipment that can be used throughout Jamaica’s hospital systems is pivotal. It allows hospitals that Issa Trust is a part of to share staff, maintenance and patient disposables.

A BIG HELLO TO THE COUPLES COMMUNITY!

Even though we can’t see you right away, we are looking forward to the day we can welcome you home, to Couples Resorts. The Issa Trust Foundation and Couples Resorts have been busy! Couples continues to work on keeping the resort fresh and presentable while keeping their staff safe and protected. We, with the help of Couples Resorts, have been providing the local caregivers and hospitals medical equipment, personal protection, ventilators, portable x-rays, intensive care monitors, etc. to make sure they are equipped with the tools they need to help Jamaica fight this pandemic. Be sure to watch the short video below and donate to our cause so we can continue to help Jamaica fight this global pandemic.

Paul Issa Covid 19 Update

PREVIOUS NEWSLETTER

Issa Trust Foundation – March 2015 Newsletter

Russell Hitchcock and Graham Russell
Russell Hitchcock and Graham Russell
 
Announcing Air Supply as New Goodwill Ambassadors  
Russell Hitchcock and Graham Russell of the popular Air Supply music group have performed thousands of concerts in their 40 years as a soft-rock duo, but one of their most recent tours to visit sick and disadvantaged children in Jamaica put them on a different stage as the new Goodwill Ambassadors of the Issa Trust Foundation. “Sharing a day with the children of Jamaica at school and in the hospitals was one of the most beautiful and touching days I have ever spent,” Russell says. “It reminds us that we are all one people and we must share our resources with those far less fortunate and in great need. This is the real world, and we are all a part of it. We all need each other.”
“Their award-winning song All Out of Love has a new meaning for us now,” says Diane Pollard, President of Issa Trust Foundation. “Air Supply performs 130 concerts a year, and it’s wonderful that they still have time to show their love for our future, the children.”  
 

 
Computers for Kids  
 
Free Hill Primary with Ambassador Sue Cobb
Children are eager to learn on the new computers at Jamaica’s Free Hill Primary and Infant School.
 
Collaboration between the Issa Trust Foundation (ITF) and the American Friends of Jamaica (AFJ) has resulted in a new computer room for the Free Hill Primary and Infant School in the St. Mary Parish. The new dedicated space will be a significant resource to reach under-performing kids in the school of more than 400 students. Principal Martin Murphy says it will be overseen by a teacher who will provide one-on-one instruction that will greatly enhance each child’s literacy and math skills. Issa Trust Foundation understands that ensuring a strong primary education for Jamaica’s children is critical to Jamaica’s improved future. As a result, ITF has been actively involved in numerous projects at the Free Hill Primary and Infant School, including the outfitting of an impressive library.
 
Meet Leo Gilling and Camp Summer Plus  
Leo Gilling
Leo Gilling is not one to forget his roots-or anyone in need. The industrious native of Jamaica, who now runs an insurance agency in Florida, grew up in Oracabessa with a determination to make the most of his life. For Leo, that means working hard and giving back even harder, particularly in the area of education. Read more.
 
Issa Trust Foundation Newsletter
Jim Colvin considers the chance to build working relationships with Jamaican medical workers a valuable strength of the Issa Trust Foundation.
A Medical Match
 
Jim Colvin saw a perfect partnership when
visiting Jamaican hospitals for the first
time in November 2013. “I had been to Haiti,
so I was prepared for anything,” says Jim, whose job at medical equipment manufacturer Welch Allyn includes handling global donation requests.
“But Jamaica has a different type of need. While Haiti is still struggling with infrastructure and
relies more on remote clinics, the hospitals I visited in Jamaica have brick and mortar and extremely dedicated staff….The medical personnel are educated and able to help,
but they can’t because they lack medical equipment of all types.” Read more.
 

 
A Winning Team
 
Dave Rahme takes height and weight measurements at one of the Issa Trust Foundation’s rural clinics.
 

Had life proceeded on the course I envisioned

a few short years ago, I would have been in the

press box at MetLife Stadium in the Meadowlands

on Sept. 27 covering Syracuse-Notre Dame football. Instead, I was filling medical prescriptions in a makeshift pharmacy and counseling young Jamaican mothers on the possible side effects of giving their children ferrous sulfate (may cause hard do-do

or green do-do, don’t take with milk). Read more.

Meet Rob Barkema

As co-owner of Michigan-based Radiology Imaging Solutions for 27 years, Rob Barkema has frequently donated x-ray and digital imaging equipment. “Through the years we have helped International Aid,

a Christian missionary group in our area that donated a piece of x-ray equipment for one of the hospitals helped by the Issa Trust

Foundation,” Rob says. “We usually get the equipment to International Aid and that is the end of it for us. This time, Diane Pollard came back and wanted to know if we would come to Jamaica to install the equipment.”

Responding with a yes, Rob went, saw the need, and agreed to help start a new initiative to help Jamaicans get the healthcare they desperately need. Here, he shares some insights into the new program: Read more.

Issa Trust Foundation
Enriching Lives in Jamaica
PREVIOUS NEWSLETTER
With tireless devotion, Issa Trust Foundation CEO Diane Pollard, Dr. Pat Brophy, Kerri Cook and Michelle Swaney led the highly-successful recent Medical Initiative. Your support is needed to continue serving the children, our future.
MISSION ACCOMPLISHED. “IT’S ALL ABOUT THE KIDS.”
We couldn’t begin to do it without you. Thanks to your generous support, our 10th Medical Initiative of more than 40 volunteer doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists, optometrists, pharmacists, and support staff helped nearly 1,000 underserved children in Jamaica. By the end of five clinic days, the team had dispensed 77 eyeglasses and filled 1,301 prescriptions. They also delivered hospital equipment, encouragement, nutritional education–and plenty of hugs. As Medical Director Pat Brophy says, “It’s all about the kids.”
 
MEET DR. JEFF
It is standing room only in the emergency room of St. Ann’s Bay Hospital as Dr. Jeffrey Segar squeezes through the chaos to reach a back room. Here, he and respiratory therapist Jana Meredith are enthusiastically working to bring a stripped-down Read more. 
COMING HOME: REFLECTIONS FROM A JAMAICAN PHARMACIST INTERN 
 

Shanique Powell remembers playing marbles, shooting a slingshot, and splashing in a backyard river in the rural Jamaican community where she grew up. She also recalls less idyllic times. All these thoughts and more flooded the University of Iowa pharmacy intern’s mind as she revisited rural Jamaica for the first time in more than 5 years. “There are a lot of Jamaicans that leave here and never come back,” Shanique says. “They never figure out a way to help their community or reach out to everyone who is here because they go abroad for a better life.” Read more.

PREVIOUS NEWSLETTER

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We’re excited-and grateful. As we prepare for our 10th Annual Pediatric Medical Initiative, we hope we can again count on you for much-needed support. Thank you for working alongside Issa Trust Foundation to help dramatically improve lives. 

 

Issa Trust Foundation and Couples Resorts will once again be offering free medical care for children ages birth to 18 years in 6 locations this September.

 

An enthusiastic team of more than 40 volunteers (including pharmacists, physicians, paediatricians, nephrologists, pulmonologists, paediatric nurses and nurse practitioners, respiratory therapists and a neonatologist) is preparing to leave for Jamaica this September. In addition to physicals, all children will receive free eye exams and glasses, if needed, courtesy of the Michigan Lions. The team will also provide health and education lectures at St. Ann’s Bay Hospital. 

 

 

Coming Soon: Our 10th Annual Medical Initiative! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You don’t have to travel to Jamaica to be a huge member of the team. Your support helps provide much-needed medical supplies to help improve the healthcare for many deserving children and families. Your gift can make a world of difference in the life of a child. Please come through for deserving kids with your generous gift today. Opportunities to Help

 

Chris Mentz, RN Happy Times  Kerri Cook, RN

 

   

AUGUST 2014

 

DONATE

 

Every donation to the Issa Trust Foundation brings real-life miracles by funding equipment, medical care, and educational programs that save and improve thousands of children’s lives each year. Monthly giving is now available, as well. Please don’t wait. At this very moment, far too many children are in need of your compassionate support. 

 Please donate now.

 

 

 

 

 VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT

 

Our volunteers change lives-including their own. Third-year pediatric resident Merrian Brooks writes about her experience in our pediatric rotation program:

 

Falling in Love  

“Yes, it’s true. I’ve fallen in love…. with a 6-year-old boy with the sweetest smile. Don’t worry I’m not getting all Mariah Carey on ya. I saw this boy in clinic the other day, and he just wowed me. He has a chronic illness. He could tell me why he was coming and could name his problem. He was initially shy but became very chatty. Like many boys his age, he was asking all kinds of questions and kept practicing saying the word stethoscope.