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Graduates of Northern Caribbean University (NCU), in Manchester, have been urged to give back to their community, by Dr. Margaret Best, Minister of Health Promotion in the Province of Ontario, Canada.
Addressing the graduation ceremony at the university on Sunday August 10, she said one of the most important successes of a nation, is when individuals volunteer to effect change in the life of others.
“Graduates, this is the first day of significant challenges, but it is also the first day of great accomplishments and victorious triumphs, as you go forward to be of service to your people, your country and the world. True success is achieved only when we, as individuals, give back to our families, when we go back to our friends and our colleagues, when we go back to our communities, and more importantly, when we effect change and make a difference,” the Minister said.
Citing her own experience growing up in a poor household in May Pen, Clarendon, Dr. Best told the audience that she was able to accomplish her dreams, because people gave a lot of themselves in helping her.
“My story may seem unique, but undoubtedly if I were to peer beneath the surface of each of your lives, I would see similar stories of young people who have risen to life’s challenges. Young people with a fierce determination to beat the odds, and yes, young people who have dusted it off, stepped it up and young people who have overcome hardships. I believed in my dreams and potential, and at every critical point in my personal journey, I have been refreshed by different people, who provided steadfast support,” she said.
The Minister added that true leadership is in serving and helping others to accomplish dreams. “I can state with some conviction, that behind every successful person are the unseen enablers who pray for them, hope for them, believe in them, encourage them, support and invest in them. After decades of involvement in community work, I have discovered that true success is defined, not only in how much we get, but in how much we give, and true leadership is found, not in how much we direct, but in how much we serve others and support their best outcomes and their hopes for a brighter future,” she said.