PM Harris (centre) along with Help-a-Child recipient and her parents at the ceremony in 2018. SKNIS Photo.

One hundred and forty students from Constituency 7 in St. Kitts, which stretches from Ottley’s to Belle Vue, will each receive a bursary of $500 from Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris at the Help-a-Child Primary School Scholarship Awards Ceremony Tuesday, Nov. 12, at the Estridge Moravian Church in Mansion at 5 p.m.

The 140 recipients represent the highest total ever to benefit from this programme, which the prime minister founded 16 years ago, in a single year. Five years ago, 24 students benefitted, and last year, 85.

Tuesday’s ceremony will bring the total amount awarded under the Help-a-Child Programme to $364,000, and the total number of awardees to 728 during its 16-year history.

Coordinator of Help-a-Child, Myrtilla Williams said that the programme’s robust expansion over the years has been as a result of the strong desire by Dr. Harris to impact the people he serves as a parliamentarian. This month (November) marks 26 years since Dr. Harris was elected as a Member of Parliament.

“Contributing to these students’ education is just one of the many ways that the prime minister is giving back,” Ms. Williams said, adding that Prime Minister Harris consistently expresses an interest to help as many persons as possible.

Traditionally, the recipients have only been students who attend the four primary schools in Constituency 7: Violet Petty Primary in Lodge, Joshua Obadiah Williams Primary in Molineux, Estridge Primary in Mansion and Edgar T. Morris Primary in Tabernacle.

In 2017, the list of awardees was expanded to include students attending the Cotton Thomas Comprehensive School in Basseterre, but who reside in Constituency 7. Further expansion occurred in 2018 to include students from the area who attend other primary schools outside of Constituency 7.

Help-a-Child enlists primary school principals and teachers, as well as community members, to identify candidates who demonstrate academic potential and financial need.