Cynthia Mother Pratt Foundation donates thousands of pairs of footwear to ministry


FORMER Deputy Prime Minister Cynthia “Mother” Pratt.



THE Cynthia Mother Pratt Foundation with help from supporters donated more than 35,000 pairs of footwear Friday to the Ministry of Social Services and Urban Development for both New Providence and Grand Bahama.

Based on continued support and generous donations from Ron and Dianne Cacciatore of the Broward County School Board in Fort Lauderdale, former deputy prime minister Cynthia “Mother” Pratt donated 16,000 pairs of shoes to Social Services on Friday and 22,000 pairs earmarked for Grand Bahama.

The presentation was made at the foundation's current base outside of Mother Pratt’s church, Prayer and Praise Assembly, at Ragged Island Street.

As Mother Pratt presented the donation to Social Services Minister Obie Wilchcombe, she expressed her appreciation for the donations, which would be helping many persons still in dire need, especially due to Hurricane Dorian and the pandemic.

“I wanted to present these to the minister, because I know the need in the Family Islands, particularly today, after COVID,” she said. “And so I believe that in sending these things, we can help so many, so many of these people who are in dire straits.”

The former MP said the public should be mindful that even the government needs help.

“What is important is that we work as a team to help because the government alone cannot afford all of the expenses. And Mr Wilchcombe is an excellent minister. He keeps us abreast of everything. And he talks about the need for us to partner so that we can help one another,” she said.

Mr Wilchcombe echoed Mother Pratt’s sentiments, saying the foundation’s donation would save many. He also expressed his gratitude for Mother Pratt’s continued acts of benevolence.

“I want to thank her so much for this, because whilst we might be living pretty good, there are many in our country who are not. There are many in our country, particularly in areas that were affected by Hurricane Dorian and the pandemic who are still hurting today,” he said.

“There's so many of our people who need food,” the minister also said. “So many of our people who need shelter, and our ministry in partnership with organisations like the Mother Pratt Foundation, and the friends from abroad, are seeking to bring relief. The bottom line is we are seeking to wipe the tears from every eye and it doesn't matter who or where they are. We're searching them out. And we will.”

He said his ministry has also been discussing further partnership with Mother Pratt’s Foundation, to launch the mentorship programme for adolescents and adults. The programme will be based at Pat’s Senior Citizens Home on Soldier Road.

“This is gonna be a fantastic programme. We hope to launch very soon. We have issues with young men, we have issues with young women in our country, we have issues generally with causing our children to have the wherewithal to be able to exist or coexist in this world community,” Mr Wilchcombe said.

Dr Glen Beneby, former chief medical officer at the Ministry of Health and Wellness, who is working with Mother Pratt for the mentorship programme for adolescents and adults, said that he is currently speaking with Mr Wilchcombe to get approval to operate within Urban Renewal Centres and affect change for young Bahamian men and women.

“We are encouraged by the support that has been given as far as the reception of the programme. The programme will be offered in the urban renewal centres, and with all young people across the country, once we have the official approval of the minister, but at the moment, we are very pleased that he's talking with us. And we’re encouraged that the way ahead looks very bright,” he said.

Though the Cynthia Mother Pratt Foundation was officially established in December 2017 as a non-profit organisation, the foundation has been in operation for more than 10 years to help those in need, especially those living in the inner-city.

Since then, the foundation has donated numerous resources and supported many Bahamians in the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian and the pandemic.

Over the last five years, the Cacciatores, who are loyal supporters of the foundation, have sent thousands of books and other school supplies, used household furniture, clothes, shoes and other resources.

Mother Pratt saw to it that these resources also benefited families, schools and churches in Grand Bahama, Abaco, Cat Island, Andros, Acklins, Mayaguana, and the other Family Islands.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment