Georgetown, Guyana – (February 3, 2016) United States (US) based Guyanese Reverend Banmattie Ram and Mr. Jonathan Subrian, today, met with President David Granger, at the Ministry of the Presidency, to provide him with an overview of a project that they started in Essequibo to combat suicide.

In an invited comment, Reverend Ram, who is also a teacher in New York, said that she read about the recent upsurge in suicide here and took a decision to do something about it.

“I said…that I need to buy myself a ticket and get down here because I have a background in counselling and I am a Pastor, and [do] what I can [to] help persons,” Reverend Ram said.

Since she arrived, Reverend Ram, with support from Mr. Jonathan Subrian and others from the region and those in the diaspora have initiated several meetings, particularly in the schools in Essequibo, offering counselling and motivational sessions.

“I started in Essequibo at the Anna Regina Multilateral School and the Abram Zuil Secondary [School], we did small and interactive sessions with the students, listening to what they had to say. w\We held community meetings, meetings with the religious leaders and so on to see how best we can go ahead in addressing this issue,” she said.

According to Reverend Ram, so far, the region’s response has been phenomenal and those involved are now looking at ways to expand the programme.

Meanwhile, Mr. Subrian said work has now started in Charity, Pomeroon, where discussions are on-going to adopt the Charity Secondary School and the Students’ Hostel to start a mentorship pilot project.

“We want to adopt the school and the hostel and to see what we can do in terms of providing the goods and services that they may need. I believe when you start at a microcosm level, then we can use the results for growth. If there are weaknesses, it can be identified and fixed and if there are successes, then we can replicate it. Once this becomes a success, it will radiate and more people will come on board,” he said.

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