Updated: Aug 5, 2020

Sister Basilia Centre (SBC) is celebrating the International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) today, December 3. IDPD is an important occasion that aims to promote the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities in all spheres of society and development, and to increase awareness of their situations in every aspect of political, social, economic and cultural life.

SBC will be observing IDPD through a week filled with activities involving both SBC clients and the community in hopes of bringing forth awareness to persons with disabilities within the community. On Monday, the centre introduced the week with various games and group activities for its clients.

On December 3, SBC is observing IDPD with a flag parade on the premises which will be followed by a motorcade. The motorcade starts at SBC through Belair, unto Front Street, Back street, and back to the centre. On Wednesday, group leaders and their clients will carry out an assessment, which will include the White and Yellow Cross, checking for accessibility for all clients with disabilities. On Thursday, Basilia is hosting a sports day together Milton Peters College (MPC) at Raoul Illidge sports complex. The festivities come to an end on Friday with a talent show held at the centre, where clients will showcase their talents for families and friends.

In celebrating IDPD, Basilia hopes to educate the community on persons with disabilities through the identification of the social and environmental obstacles they face within our community.


Group and assistant unit leader Arleen Bailey-Illidge shares how a disability is not always what we assume. “In some way, there are many who may have some sort of disability or health impairment, this could be through the use of glasses for reading or medication to manage pain. “However, with a mentally or physically disabled person, their disabilities present more limitations and impairments such as the use of a wheelchair that often leave them excluded in many ways within our community,” she said.

Arleen concludes by saying it is important that we provide and promote inclusiveness for persons within our community that have a disability. That we respect them and remember that their disability does not necessarily define them; it is just one aspect of that person. “We (SBC) hope to break the stigma surrounding persons with disabilities.”

The theme for this year’s IDPD observance is empowering persons with disabilities and ensuring their inclusiveness and equality in society by “leaving no one behind”. 

The annual observance of IDPD was proclaimed in 1992, by the United Nations General Assembly resolution and since then has been annually observed on December 3 around the world.

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Updated: Aug 5, 2020

Photo from left to right: Nurse Ludis Arrondell, Nurse Ann-Marie Busby, Nurse Mirugia Webster and Nurse Virughia Curlingford.

We are so very proud of our 4 new Registered Nurses who graduated last night. Your hard work has paid off and we look forward to work with you to deliver the best of care to our clients. From all of us at WYCCF: congratulations!

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SINT MAARTEN (CUL DE SAC) - On Saturday August 31st the Sister Basilia Center (SBC) will celebrate 35 years of existence with a fun filled family day in the Emilio Wilson Park. The joyous anniversary will be celebrated with a full day of activities and the celebration is open to the public, free of charge.

The festivities start at 10 am, there will be a waterslide, laser tag, wet and dry bouncy castles, games, face painting and live performances by the clients of SBC and Funtopia. Food and drinks will be on sale and the day will close off with a grand raffle for which tickets will be sold throughout the day. The grand prize of the fundraiser raffle is a voucher from Winair for 2 roundtrip tickets.

Sister Basilia Center first opened its doors with a Daycare in South Reward, right next to the Catholic Church. Founded by the Catholic sisters from Voorschoten, the Netherlands, Sister Basilia herself was the driving force behind the first care activities on the island, specifically for persons with an intellectual disability.

In those days, most persons with disabilities were kept at home, away from public life. This changed for the better when the Daycare opened on August 28th, 1984 and the first clients started to make use of the services provided.

The Center developed with the support of loyal employees and volunteers and more and more clients found their way to the Daycare. In 2011 the board of the White and Yellow Cross Care Foundation envisioned the need for a bigger facility, with full wheelchair access and special facilities for the growing group of clients.

Construction started on a new Daycare building in St. John’s Estate, and on June 28th, 2012 the brand new, two-story Daycare was festively opened. With the need for care growing, the Sister Basilia Center Daycare expanded from 35 to 45 clients and in the summer of 2018 the capacity of the Daycare was expanded to 65 clients.

Currently 57 clients are enrolled, and they participate in daily programs that are tailor-made for each client’s development and goals.

The board and management warmly invite the general public to come out to the 35th Anniversary Family Day in the Emilio Wilson park this Saturday between 10 am and 5 pm and join our clients and their families in celebrating this special day.

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