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Senator calls for new approach
MINISTER of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean, said there is need for a new approach in getting Barbadians abroad to support worthy causes at home.
She made the comment while addressing the Second Barbados Diaspora Conference, which continued yesterday at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Conference Centre.
Senator McClean told several overseas-based Barbadians that like many other countries, Barbados relies on its citizens abroad to provide critical financial support to a number of worthy causes.
While separating that support from remittances which are for specific purposes like the maintenance and the well-being of families left behind by Barbadians who have emigrated, as well as support in cases of natural disasters, the Minister said that Government welcomes the support given by trusts and wealthy individuals.
“To this end, we believe we have to develop an approach which seeks to what this country’s people in all locations can do,” McClean said. She pointed out that any effort to build a new philanthropy there has to be a major role for Government.
According to her, “To this end, Government has looked at its legislation to ensure that it facilitates giving at the local level. We have made some adjustments to our income tax legislation and we are undertaking a review of legislation to ensure that we put in place those things.”
The Minister said that in order to encourage people to talk about and to act, Government wants to expand traditional giving, especially that which appears to be short term and often limited benefit, with the notable example of the Maria Holder Foundation.
Ms. McClean told her audience there should be a new approach towards collaboration between Government, the beneficiaries of philanthropy and the range of intermediaries which would facilitate that philanthropic effort. (JB)