The St John Association of Antigua & Barbuda a registered charity under the patronage of Their Excellencies, Sir Rodney and Lady Williams, gathered for its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Wednesday, September 20, 2023, at Government House. The meeting was attended by distinguished members of the organization, including His Excellency the Governor General, who welcomed and commended the Executive and Members for their outstanding contributions to the community.
Governor General Sir Rodney Williams praised the St John Ambulance for its remarkable work, especially for its pioneering initiative, the St. John Hospice, which is the first of its kind in the Eastern Caribbean. The hospice has been a beacon of hope, providing palliative care to terminally ill patients at significantly discounted costs, thus easing the burden on countless families in need.
The success of the St. John Hospice has been made possible through the unwavering support of the organization’s dedicated members and staff, as well as the generosity of private and corporate citizens. The Governor General also acknowledged the international organizations that have extended their support to the cause. Notably, Phil Keoghan and the entire CBS production team of “Secret Celebrity Renovations” were recognized for their significant contribution. They transformed the St John Hospice in Antigua and Barbuda, and this heartwarming episode was aired on Friday, August 4th on US-based TV network, CBS and again on our local station ABS on Friday, September 15th.
In a heart-touching Season 3 premiere of “Secret Celebrity Renovation,” Phil Keoghan returned to his hometown of Antigua and Barbuda to surprise his former neighbour, hospice volunteer, Lotte Edwards, with a much-needed renovation to the St. John Hospice, located at the Holberton grounds. The episode also showcased Keoghan’s personal tour of Antigua and Barbuda, where he reminisced about his childhood, including visits to his old house and school.
During the AGM, key reports were presented to the members. Ms. Heather Mannix-Labadie, outgoing President of the St. John Ambulance, presented her annual report, highlighting the organization’s achievements and milestones. The Board Chairman also welcomed the incoming Chair, Mr. Pedro Corbin, wished him well and pledged her continued support. Treasurer presented the financial report, demonstrating prudent financial management. Administrator Cathlyn Gilkes shared valuable insights, and representative Rosemary Magoris, of the charity’s thrift shop, Fashion Encore 1, provided an update on its activities. The members of the Association expressed their sincere gratitude to the outgoing Chairman and applauded her faithful service to the organization in the post of Chairman for the past ten years.
Founder Mrs Agnes Meeker was also in attendance, embodying the spirit and commitment that has guided the St John Ambulance throughout its journey to becoming St. John’s Association of Antigua & Barbuda. Eighteen years of faithful service, she continues to be an inspiration to its members.
The St John Association of Antigua & Barbuda remains grateful for the support it has received from the community, both locally and internationally. With the dedication of its members and staff and the generosity of its partners, the organization looks forward to continuing its mission of providing compassionate care to those in need.
Photos: The Executive and Members of the St. John Association of Antigua and Barbuda in attendance at its AGM 2023 at Government House His Excellency Sir Rodney Williams, Governor General and Patron (left), presenting instruments of appointment to the incoming Chairman of the Board, St. John Association of Antigua and Barbuda, Mr. Pedro Corbin (right); in the foreground seated, Past President, Ms. Heather Mannix-Labadie.
For media inquiries and further information, please contact: Cathlyn Gilkes, Administrator, St. John Hospice – 788 7774
About St John Hospice: Palliative home care in Antigua was initially started in 2005 under the auspices of the Order of St. John when it was discovered that there were no facilities or services offered for persons diagnosed with terminal illnesses. In response, a hospice service was developed that offered home care. This led to acquiring the present building from the Government of Antigua & Barbuda when the new hospital Mount Saint John opened in 2009. Raising funds and renovations took approximately two years, and in December 2011 the Gweneth O’Reilly building at Holberton was dedicated. On January 1st 2012, the doors of the St John Hospice Antigua were open to the public.