Chairman of the organisation, Brian Pivott, said the group is “actively working’’ on setting up a library.
“We also want to do a children’s playground,’’ Mr. Pivott said. “We’re looking for funding for that. We have already done the project proposal.’’
Mr. Pivott was speaking following a recent ceremony marking the completion of a series of projects involving the compound of the St. Paul’s Community Centre and some of its facilities.
The St. Paul’s Community Centre, which is maintained and overseen by a management committee, was built about three decades ago during the period of the People’s Revolutionary Government.
Among those who attended the ceremony were Finance Minister and MP for St. George’s North East, Nazim Burke; Foreign Minister and MP for St. George’s South East, Karl Hood; Tourism Minister and MP for the Town of St. George, Peter David; former MP for St. George’s South East, Sen. Gregory Bowen; Chinese Ambassador to Grenada, His Excellency Xu Jianguo; and a broad cross section of residents from St. Paul’s and neighbouring La Borie.
The speeches of officials were interspersed with an exhibition netball game, and with entertainment from LIME Commancheros Steel Orchestra and from students of the St. Paul’s Government School.
Mr. Pivott said that the Community Centre and its environs – located in St. George’s North East, but also serving villagers of the adjacent St. George’s South East constituency – were neglected for more than a dozen years.
“The organisation took the initiative in 2008 to refurbish the place,’’ he revealed. “The entire compound had deteriorated badly.’’
A series of project proposals was drafted that resulted in the receipt of EC$177,300 from the Grenada and Chinese Governments.
Rehabilitation work started March 20, 2010, and “provided temporary employment for 15 persons within the community,’’ said Karl Pivott, secretary of the St. Paul’s Sports, Cultural and Development Organisation.
“The People’s Republic of China, through its Ambassador, provided 86 percent of the total project cost. The balance, 14 percent, was provided by the Government of Grenada,’’ added Pivott, who drafted the proposal that was sent to the Grenada Government.
The proposal was approved by the organisation’s executive that now comprises the secretary and the chairman; vice chairman Cecil Noel; treasurer Asha Francis; assistant secretary/treasurer David Bullen; and public relations officer, O’Brien Robinson.
“The overall project was broken into smaller ones,’’ chairman Brian Pivott said. “We sent project requests to Chinese officials here in Grenada and former Foreign Minister, Peter David, was instrumental in negotiating assistance for us from the Chinese.’’
The Chinese Government donated EC$47,000 for fencing the compound. Brian Pivott said the cost of the fencing was higher but expenses were reduced because volunteer labour from the community was utilized.
Additionally, an effort was undertaken to resurface and fence the basketball court. However, before those two aspects of the work could begin, the St. Paul’s Sports, Cultural and Development Organisation needed $25,000 to fortify a crumbling retaining wall.
The organisation, through the work of its chief technical man and proposal writer, Karl Pivott, and with the assistance of MP Burke, made a successful application to the Grenada Government for the $25,000.
A Chinese donation of $79,300 allowed for resurfacing of the courtyard from asphalt to concrete; another $26,000 was received for the courtyard’s fencing.
“We really stretched the money and a report was given to the funders at each stage,’’ said chairman Pivott.
The courtyard has been marked for basketball, volleyball and netball. A backboard for b-ball has been donated by New York-based supporters of LIME Commancheros.
“We have planted poles and we are looking for funding for lights for the court,’’ Pivott said.
His organisation is also planning a project “Phase 2’’ that involves refurbishing the St. Paul’s Community Centre.
The work to be carried out in the second phase will include the replacing of doors and windows, and repairing the main hall, roof and toilets.
The Community Development Division in the Ministry of Housing has already donated some fixtures for use when the toilet repairs are completed.
According to Karl Pivott, the chairman’s brother, “the execution of Phase 2 will definitely turn this multipurpose facility into a place where persons from within, and beyond the St. Paul’s community, can utilize – with comfort – for the development of education, sports & culture.’’