St. Augustine Primary to Host Radiothon Saturday on ZJB

Reduced contributions from traditional funding sources and increased expenses are some of the factors that are driving the upcoming radiothon for the island’s lone private primary school.

St. Augustine Primary School will host a fundraising radiothon on Saturday July 2, 2022, on ZJB (Radio Montserrat) from 9AM with radio personality Rose Willock. The school has a goal of raising $45,000 which will go directly to delivering a quality education to its students.

A release from the school noted that the school “has been an important part of Montserrat’s identity for 147 years playing a critical role in molding and educating well rounded boys and girls. As a non-profit company all income generated by the school is used solely to deliver on its mandate to the families of its students.”

The school has an annual budget of XCD660,000 of which operational expenses account for more than 70%. School fees, government subvention and fundraisers are the primary ways in which the school can meet its financial responsibilities.

According to the release, the school’s financial position is increasingly at risk for several reasons:
– maintenance costs are increasing due to the age of the buildings and facilities – SAS is the only primary school that has not had its buildings and compound upgraded to meet industry standards and to mitigate maintenance costs;
– reduced fundraising ability – fundraisers are yielding less profits due to global events like covid-19 and the shrinking population;
– reduced contributions from traditional sources like the Church since they themselves are being affected financially;
– reduced volunteer services – volunteers are fewer in numbers and are themselves facing financial struggles.

As part of the school’s response modest increases have been made to School Fees mindful of the current pressures being felt by households. Saturday’s radiothon is another initiative aimed
at alleviating the financial challenges of the school.

Past students, companies, businesses, people overseas and all supporters of the school are being called on to help and pledge financial support during Saturday’s live call-in programme. Rose Willock and past students Tiffannie Skerritt, Nadia Duberry and Jayesh Sadhwani will form the panel of hosts and will be joined by others like Dr. Selvyn Maloney, Lorraine Lewis, Joseph O’Garro; Haley Shay Kassie and Alana Kassie.

Supporters will be allowed to call live on the show or off air to pledge and share their reflections about the school, its students and teachers, and its history. For further information about making donations to the school’s Bank of Montserrat account and how to get in touch on the day persons can visit the school’s Facebook page at St. Augustine Primary MNI.