Through various local partnerships, Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine (Ross Vet) has long supported Kittitian schools and youth programs to give back to the community our campus calls home.
In November 2021, Sandy Point Primary School in St. Kitts contacted Ross Vet seeking support for the school’s Library Reading Program. “At Sandy Point Primary School, we believe that reading is a fundamental part of learning… It is our aim to improve the cognitive development of our children by challenging them to read 25 or more books for the school year,” wrote Nicole Williams-Francis, Sandy Point’s librarian, in a letter to Ross Vet.
Ross Vet was thrilled to support the program and donated suggested prizes for 30 participating children. Donations included varieties of children’s books, activities kits, classroom essentials, and school supplies for all participants. Sandy Point’s initial challenge of 25 books was no match for the children and their eagerness to read; the challenge winner read an incredible 114 books. Second and third place also accomplished the feat of reading at least 100 books, with 106 and 102 of their own.
“I was blown away by the winning statistics for this reading challenge. I can only imagine in this time of pandemic where we have been surrounded by restrictions, slowed movement, and reduced interaction of people, the journeys these children were able to experience through these books. It must have been life-transforming,” said Desiree McKoy, Ross Vet’s director of campus operations.
McKoy, a local Kittitian, finds a lot of inspiration in giving back to her local community. “Being a part of Ross Vet's efforts to support local St. Kitts youth and youth programs is refreshing. Our youth are our future, so these opportunities allow us to invest proactively and thereby help to point our youth in the direction of progress, growth, and empowerment. Those limits are endless where there is guidance and support.”