From left to right: Teacher from Providence Elementary, champion Bianca Massiah and Chief Operating Officer, ICBL, Oliver Jordan.
ICBL 2019 Junior Spelling Bee winners receive awards
The winners and sponsors of the recently concluded ICBL Junior Spelling Bee were treated to a special awards and recognition ceremony on Friday afternoon at the Radisson Aquatica Resort.
The 2019 champion Bianca Massiah and runners up Jonathan Broome, Luke McIntyre and Mekhi Osei who placed second, third and fourth respectively were presented with their prizes by the sponsors who praised ICBL for the initiative.
Reflecting on the conceptualisation of the Spelling Bee, Chief Operating Officer of ICBL, Oliver Jordan remarked, “Being a company with a mandate to support and encourage youth development, ICBL set out on this journey with the goal of positively influencing the culture of reading in our youth in our sights; and if the level of competitiveness displayed by these students is anything to go by, I can safely say we are on the right path.”
He went on to commend the sponsors, “To our partners here with us today, your support and generosity helped us to realise a truly monumental activity. Rewarding good work done by our children, academic or otherwise is important. This helps to make the rewarded action memorable and by doing this, instills in them positive habits and practices.”
Sponsors of the grand prize, a trip for two to the UK, Virgin Atlantic presented the tickets to a very grateful Massiah. “Our entire Barbados team followed the “ICBL Junior Spelling Bee” online, and found ourselves spelling along with
the students,” said André Bello, Commercial Manager, Caribbean at Virgin Atlantic.
“We believe that experiencing new places and cultures is an important part of a young person’s education, and we’re delighted to play a part in getting the inaugural event’s winner, Bianca Massiah, to visit the United Kingdom for the first time. We hope that she has an unforgettable trip that will bring her fond memories for years to come.”
A well-spoken Massiah of Providence Elementary addressed the guests as she thanked each sponsor individually and recounted her journey; “Over the past few weeks, in preparing for the finals, I’ve learned to spell so many words. My teachers at school, my mom at home and also my grandmother, all helped me practice spelling difficult words. I got many of these words wrong at first but I kept trying. I am happy to stand here and say it definitely paid off.”
Fourth-placed Bay Primary student Osei, who thought he was there to collect one prize, $500 in cash from ICBL, was pleasantly surprised when sponsors Cave Shepherd Card Services, Stansfeld Scott and the Barbados Public Workers Cooperative Credit Union revealed that they were adding to this with prizes of their own. The sponsors awarded Osei with a tablet, a Haliborange Kids Health pack and a Thrift Club Membership account respectively.
The winning school, Providence Elementary was awarded a laser jet printer compliments of Promotech, a voucher for secretarial or print services from Promotional Print Services and $5 000 in cash from ICBL.