St Vincent and the Grenadines Disability Campaigner
Commonwealth Point of Light 89. Patricia Cumberbatch
Patricia Cumberbatch, representing St Vincent and the Grenadines, is a founding member of ‘The National Society of Persons with Disabilities’, the largest organisation for disabled people in the country.
Inspired by her own experiences after being diagnosed with muscular dystrophy at the age of just 18, Patricia has spent the past three decades campaigning for better access to health and social care services for disabled people. The society runs free vocational training programmes, including in sewing, home economics and computer training to equip members with the resources, support, and information they need to live full and active lives. Every year Patricia hosts an annual march as a fundraising drive to raise vital funds for education scholarships, followed by a rally to showcase the ability and creativity of partner students. Patricia has pioneered a partnership with the Church of Mormons that has led to the provision of 300 wheelchairs for disabled persons.
Patricia was presented with her award by HRH The Prince of Wales, on behalf of HM The Queen as Head of the Commonwealth, as part of his official visit to St Vincent and the Grenadines in March 2019 (pictured below).
Janet Douglas, UK High Commissioner in St Vincent and the Grenadines said:
“Patricia has been a champion for people with Disabilities in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines for over three decades. I am delighted she has been recognised as a Commonwealth Point of Light.’”
“This is a great surprise for me, still wondering, ‘Really, what have I done?’, because what I am doing is from a heart of love. Love for humanity, love to put smiles on other faces, especially persons with disabilities. I feel a sense of satisfaction helping persons to achieve to their fullest potential. And this is a gift I receive from God. Freely I receive and freely I give. I am truly humbled to receive such an excellent and high honour. To God be the Glory, the Great thing He has done.
Thanks to Her Majesty The Queen and all the organisers who will make this a reality. Thank you.”