June 21, 2024

INFO 10

THE TRUTH IN BLACK AND WHITE

Healthcare NGO birthed in honour of murdered Linden nurse Schenise Apple

By Abiola Archer

In honour of her stellar service to healthcare delivery, the family of murdered Linden Nurse Schenise Apple, launched Apple Foundation Inc(AFI), which is a not-for-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO) which aims to bring awareness to the challenges faced by nurses daily while providing the necessary support. Nurse Schenise Apple was murdered in 2019 in Mahdia where she provided her services to the Ministry of Health. AFI will be comprised of past and present nurses along with leaders of the community and other stakeholders, who will assist with the delivery of its mandate.  In addition to supporting nurses, especially those serving in remote territories, the organization will also provide support for abused women,  senior citizens and shut-ins residing in the Linden community.

Founder of the organization and father of the late Nurse Apple, Dexton Copeland, said the foundation’s focus will be on providing care for nurses who volunteer their services willingly to the community. “The mission of the organization is to fully attend to nurses and fulfill their needs but what we ask the nurses to do in return, is to give back to the community” he said. Several nurses of the Linden community have already joined the organization including retired nurse Donna Reynolds, a nurse who worked for several years at the Linden Hospital Complex (LHC). Reynolds will be in the organization’s office to assist with data entry and to coordinate when, where and how the work will be executed since the other nurses on the team are employed. The office was also commissioned and is located at Burnham Drive, Wismar, Linden. Medical kits were also provided to the nurses who will be doing home visits, caring for shut-ins and collecting data.

Murdered : Nurse Schenise Apple

Relative Kenard Copeland gave the overview of the organization and he made reference to the United Nation’s report on Guyana being one of the leading countries in the Caribbean for violence against women and posited that this initiative is very important for the community. He added that it will  take a magnitude of research, money, support, partnership, and volunteering to continue. Pastor Mark George did the feature address and he posited words from the late Martin Luther King, who said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question should be what are you doing for others.”

George encouraged the partners to run with the organization’s cause and give a listening ear to the vulnerable. Mayor of Linden Sharma Solomon encouraged the audience to understand the various institutions of society to help change the culture of violence in all aspects. Meanwhile, Chairperson of the event Odetta Hyderkhan, a midwife of the LHC, encouraged her colleagues to continue to possess qualities of pleasantness, confidentiality, empathy and to be observant always. Trained persons who are desirous of volunteering for the organization can visit the office for further information.

API Office Space

 Present at the launch were also the Mayor of Linden, Sharma Solomon; Town Clerk, Lennox Gasper; Former Regional Chairman, Rennis Morian; and other regional and religious officials.

On the 2nd July 2019, the body of Schenise Apple was found by her colleagues hanging from a window from her room at the nurses’ hostel in Mahdia. Initially the case was treated as a suicide but following further investigation, the Guyana Police Force has now listed the case as a homicide. This was related to the family via a correspondence in 2022.