Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 3rd 2016 Contents www.tobagotoday.co.tt AUGUST 3-9, 2016
Determined not to let her son s
death be in vain, the mother of
22-year-old Isaiah Hospedales,
who was brutally murdered in
the early hours of July 23 in
Trinidad, has established a char-
ity fund to assist families who
have also lost loved ones to gun
The Isaiah Hospedales Charity
Fund will provide counselling,
financial and emotional support
to families who have endured sim-
Isaiah's mother, Tobagonian
explained last week that the idea
to embark on this initiative
stemmed from a conversation she
shared with her son a week prior
to his demise. In that resounding
moment, Isaiah, a budding chef
and lover of life, expressed a desire
to do more to improve the lives
of others, his mother told Tobago
"My son will not be another
statistic. I won't allow his life,
though surreptitiously cut short,
to be easily forgotten," stated
"Through the Isaiah Hospedales
AKA Papi' Charity Fund, we will
endeavour to ease the burden in
whichever way possible of families
(particularly parents and siblings)
whose lives have been drastically
altered because of gun violence.
To provide relief to those who
need it the most, we will partner
with non-governmental and com-
munity-based organisations and
other local bodies."
The family is currently in the
process of registering the charity
and establishing a governance
structure that would ensure the
smooth and transparent operating
of the fund.
The offering that was collected
at Isaiah's farewell service last
week (July 29) will serve as the
first deposit of funds to the charity
and will be matched by the
The family is encouraging those
interested in donating to the fund
to contact Shaheeda Sylvester at
Hospedales, a 22-year-old
Trinidad and Tobago Hospitality
and Tourism Institute student,
became the country's 253rd mur-
der victim after he was shot by
a bandit who stole his chain as
he was walking along Ariapita
Avenue, near Alfredo Street,
around 5.50 am.
Hospedales was shot three
times and the gunman escaped
in a waiting vehicle.
While Hospedales lay on the
pavement fighting for his life, he
was robbed even further by people
pretending to help him.
Hospedales' gold band, gold ring
and Apple iPhone were also
Hospedales was described as a
"loving and respectful young
man" who was "full of confi-
dence" by his father, Robin, who
said at the time that his son's "only
vice is that he liked himself."
"He never used to go places
where he felt that things he wore
would cause him harm, because
I saw him last week with the big
chain and I did not tell him any-
thing about it. I know his mother
always used to tell him about it,
and other people who were con-
cerned that wearing that would
attract unwanted attention toward
him," Robin, who described his
son as a fun loving, generous and
ambitious young man who
worked alongside them in the
family's catering company, said.
"It was shocking to me
because I know he does not ven-
ture into places where bad things
As the raging debate continues over the
location of the Sandals Resort in Tobago, a
prominent Tobagonian living in Trinidad is
welcoming the plan.
Economist and University of the West
Indies lecturer Dr Anthony Birchwood says
this is the best time for the Sandals Resorts
brand to be introduced to Tobago.
"If it is not introduced now it can very
well be the death knell necessary to worsen
the existing tourism situation," Birchwood
told Tobago Today.
"The fact that Britain's new prime minister,
Theresa May, is determined to leave the Euro-
pean Union means that Britain will go into
He added: "All the economic indicators
point to a recession as being inevitable and
if that happens there will be a falloff of tourists
travelling to Tobago. As Britain is one of the
most important areas of airlift to the island,
then of course less tourists will be going
"Even if tourists come from Britain they
will have less purchasing power, as the pound
will be devalued against the dollar."
These effects, Birchwood said, will be felt
throughout the entire Caribbean.
He said in light of the expected fallout of
Britain's exit from the EU, bringing a brand
like Sandals Resorts will assist in driving the
tourist industry on the island, as the chain
of hotels advertises worldwide.
"The move by the Keith Rowley admin-
istration to bring the chain to the island is
a fantastic move, as it can reduce the negative
effects of the expected reduction in the num-
ber of tourists from Britain to the point where
it will not be severe," the economist told
"You see we do not know how long the
recession in Britain will last and as a result,
it is a great move to plan ahead to deal with
any negative impact of Brexit."
He added, "Sandals will bring tourists from
other places besides Britain and this will add
variety to the market."
There is currently an online petition seeking
to garner support to prevent the development
at the proposed No Man's Land site, although
the full details for the 750-room resort are
yet to be released or finallised.
Asked if islanders were being unreasonable
by protesting the presence of the resort before
they knew all the details, Birchwood said he
understood their fears.
He hastened to add that the Government
is in a good place to negotiate what it will
allow Sandals to do on the island.
"Sandals seems very interested in coming
to Tobago and the Government seems very
interested in having them, so it's a matter of
negotiating the terms and conditions of the
arrangement," he said.
"Furthermore, people should go to all the
consultations they might have and air their
views so that they will have an input into
what can happen."
Isaiah Hospedales with his grandmother and mother Avis George-Hospedales.
Family members gathered in front of Domino's Pizza, where Hospedales was shot and
killed on July 23, to set up make shift memorial.
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