Through the successful completion of its annual School Supply Drive initiative, Dominica-American Relief & Development Association (DARDA) was able to help prepare a number of students throughout several villages in Dominica for academic success in the 2010/2011 school year.

DARDA is a non-profit organization formed in 1981 by a group of Dominicans living in and around the New York, USA area.

Over the years, DARDA has raised funds for and lent support towards several worthwhile causes throughout Dominica.  One of DARDA’s annual initiatives is the School Supply Drive – the goal of which is to promote literacy and education in Dominica by targeting schools in different villages and providing book bags filled with necessary school supplies to needy students.

In 2010, through various donations and fund-raising activities, DARDA was able to provide 81 students at eight different schools with book bags filled with school supplies.  Students from Morne Prosper, Morne Jaune, Trafalgar, Wotten Waven, Bagatelle, Grand Bay, Pichelin and Laudat primary schools received book bags filled with standard school supplies including notebooks, folders, loose leaf, and pencil cases filled with pencils, pens, erasers and pencil sharpeners.  Additional supplies were also included based on grade level.  Grades K-2 received arts & crafts supplies including construction paper, glue, crayons, markers, and safety scissors while grades 3-6 received rulers, highlighters and geometry sets.

In 2009, the School Supply Drive’s inaugural year, DARDA was able to provide 60 students from Convent Prep, St. Luke’s Primary, St. Mary’s Primary, St. Martin Primary, Roseau Primary and Newtown Primary with school supplies.  In 2011, DARDA hopes to be able to reach at least 100 students in additional villages.

DARDA recognizes the value of an education in a child’s growth and development.  For this reason, the School Supply Drive is a source of great pride and accomplishment for the group and the many friends of DARDA that have contributed time, funds and ideas to the drive’s success to date.  DARDA wishes the students the best in this academic year and looks forward to helping others in the years to come.

For more information about the School Supply Drive, please visit our website at www.darda.org.