UK-based Guyanese donates to eye surgery for teen

Moved by the plight of teenager Christopher Boucher, who is in need of corrective eye surgery, a retired UK-based Guyanese philanthropist has committed to help.

Edward Murray, who worked as a magistrate in the UK for 20 years, met with the teenager on Friday to donate money toward funding his surgery.

Boucher lost the vision in his left eye in October, following an accident in which he was pelted with a brick while playing in the street. He is now suffering from a corneal laceration to the left eye, and according to the boy’s mother, Mariana Mathais, doctors said three surgeries would be required to restore his vision. The family is now trying to raise the money to fund the surgeries in Trinidad.

Teenager Christopher Boucher with benefactor Edward Murray and Sabrina Craig, of the Champion of Change Organisation.

Murray donated £120 on Friday and has pledged £10 a month for 12 months starting February.

It is his hope that his gesture will inspire other Guyanese traveling from the diaspora to give back to the country, no matter the size of the contribution.

Murray, during a sit-down with Stabroek News, related that the day after arriving in Guyana on vacation, he happened upon Boucher’s story, published in the January 1 edition of the Sunday Stabroek, and was moved to donate to the cause.

“…On this occasion, I couldn’t get flights for Christmas, so I came in on the second of January and the following day…they had the old Sunday Stabroek, that’s where I read the news and I was deeply touched and concerned about Christopher’s situation and decided to make a donation,” the elderly man stated.

Murray has donated to a number of causes locally over the years, including contributions of cash and book vouchers to his former school, St Stephens Primary, and the Ptolemy Reid Rehabilitation Centre.

Sabrina Craig, President of the not-for-profit ‘Champion of Change Organisation,’ expressed gratitude at the contribution. She noted that funds for Boucher have been coming in “here and there,” but she remains hopeful that they will be able to facilitate the first surgery as early as next month.

“I wanna say thanks to Edward for helping little Chris and I hope other people out there who see the story could reach out to help little Chris.”

Anyone interested in making donations can visit the Champions of Change Organisation, which is located on the top floor of the Maraj Building, located at the corner of Charlotte and King streets.  Craig can be contacted on 217-0737 or 679-3230, and Mariana Mathais on 697-7323.

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