Health professional kickstarts non-profit body to give back to country

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By Carlena Knight

A young public health professional is seeking to give back to the country in a major way and has started a not-for-profit entity to achieve this.

Tanya Ambrose, daughter of cricket legend Sir Curtly Ambrose, recently launched ‘Scrub Life Cares’ which is dedicated to improving the ‘well-being of underprivileged communities, to protect and serve our youth, and to create positivity’.

Ambrose who is also the creator and chief blogger of ‘All About The Scrub Life’, a lifestyle and college blog promoting positive living, explained how the organisation came about.

“When I migrated from Antigua over a decade ago to further my tertiary education, it was always my dream to give back to the island where I grew up, in some capacity.

“I’ve had many goals and thought about different ways I could give back. It wasn’t until I started working in the paediatric ICU here in Georgia, and switched my major from nursing to public health, that I realised I could give back to Antigua, even if it were in a small way.

“I took a nonprofit and a programme evaluation and implementation class in college, and that’s when the idea of creating my nonprofit came about,” she explained.

“My first step was when I first gave back to the Mount St John’s Medical Centre’s paediatric unit back in 2019, and then earlier this year, in March, when I gave back to the Sunshine Home for Girls in which Digicel’s social club partnered with me.

“I truly believe it is my purpose to be of service to others. No matter how I try to stray away, I always find myself giving back and wanting to help others in some capacity,” Ambrose said.

“As a public health professional, I’ve seen firsthand how health and racial disparities, one’s socioeconomic status, and having access to resources affects many of us. This is why I decided to start the non-profit to improve the lives of others in some way.

“My ultimate goal is to take my non-profit organisation globally, but as of right now, my focus is Antigua. After all, when I moved, I made myself a promise to give back to my country.

“Being raised in Antigua is the reason why I’m able to excel and survive here in the US. I know some communities could benefit from the different programmes my non-profit will offer, and I’ve also made contact with some members of those communities,” she added.

The mission of ‘Scrub Life Cares’ is to serve youths in the underserved, low-income communities of Antigua by executing a diversity of programmes to help alleviate poverty, enhance their educational experiences, provide counselling, and develop critical life and social skills to ensure success after high school.

It also aims to assist the youth by enlisting volunteers to distribute snack packs and care packages to those who need food, enhance their education with literacy packages containing school supplies, and offer mentorship and tutoring programmes which will focus on supplemental education, guidance for character development, social skills, and group counselling.

“My goal is to have every programme fully functioning by early 2021 with the help of my team that I’m currently building, and with the help of the communities and the Antiguan public,” Ambrose shared.

She is currently looking for individuals who support the mission and share the same values and goals as Scrub Life Cares.

Those who are interested in assisting in any capacity or would like to be a part of the organisation, can email [email protected] or visit its Instagram and Facebook pages.

The organisation is currently hosting its first official giveback initiative titled Essentials for the Girls, where they will donate items to the Sunshine Home for Girls.

Currently, donations in the form of non-perishable food items, toiletries and clothing are being solicited up to December 10.

“I am aware of the current climate we’re living in with this pandemic. Any small donation will make a huge difference in these girls’ lives,” Ambrose added.  

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