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U.S celebrity chef here to raise funds for DDL Foundation

The U.S celebrity chef Nilka Henricks has been roped in to help raise funds for the charity foundation set up by Demerara Distilles Limited (DDL).

For the past three years, the Foundation has been offering five scholarships annually for deserving school children, Ambassador Rudy Collins said yesterday.

Collins is the chairman of the Foundation, which currently spends an estimated $200, 000 on one student. However, once a student is identified for the scholarship, the Foundation meets whatever expenses are needed, and so the amount could be more or less that the average expense per student.

Hendricks, who was once part of the hugely popular “Hell’s Kitchen” on U.S network Fox, said she was happy to volunteer her time to help raise funds for the Foundation.

She will be in the kitchen tomorrow when the Foundation hosts its annual Charity Dinner. Last year’s event raised almost $2 million.

At the event, patrons would bid for a chance to be served up a special meal by Hendricks. She will have as her kitchen partner Omer Cuskon, chef of the Princess Hotel, which is partnering with the Foundation for this evening’s charity dinner.

Hendricks said that as a single mother, she it “touched her heart” what the Foundation was doing, and so she readily agreed to volunteer her time to support the Foundation.

Ambassador Collins said that the Foundation’s long term goal is to support other youth projects, but as for now, the focus is on the scholarships.

Top performing students at the National Grade Six Examinations have all their expenses covered by the Foundation for all of their secondary school years.

Ambassador Collins said that the students are selected based on a criteria that includes financial circumstances that could prevent a top performer from attending the school they were designated.

Collins said that every aspect of the work of the Foundation is voluntary.  Some staff members of DDL have agreed to have part of their salary deducted to support the work of the Foundation.

However, the majority of the support has come from the charity dinner, Collins said.

As part of the fundraising activities, DDL would be auctioning five bottles of specially aged and blended DDL’s award-winning rums, the company’s Operations Director Chandradat Chintamani said.

The winning bidder would have the chance of adding to the design of the label for the rums

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