‘We’re Not All Heartless’

Says Guest House Proprietor Who Is Helping Stranded Students

Marguerite Audin
Marguerite Audin

THE guest house Manager who has doubled up as a guardian angel to one of the groups of stranded Nepalese and Indian students in St. Lucia has expressed concern over the well-being of their counterparts staying at other locations with the threat of homelessness hanging over their heads.

Marguerite Audin who runs the Happy Days Guesthouse in Gros Islet said she is rallying behind the small group of 12 students staying at her place of business and has currently waived their lodging fees. However, she cannot say the same for the other students staying at a facility near hers.

Whilst the needs of the 28 staying at the Pastoral Centre are being met, there is another set staying at a hotel and their rent is due at the end of the month. Audin said she knows that they are unable to pay their rent and so they will be homeless.

When this happens, she said: “I hope that the good Samaritans of St. Lucia will step in to help”.

More than 40 students from Nepal, India and the Phillipines are currently stranded in St Lucia after they encountered difficulty in enrolling in an educational institution in Gros Islet to which they were lured. Four foreigners are currently facing charges of money laundering and human trafficking arising out of the matter.

When asked how long she plans on housing her group, Audin said: “As long as it takes! This is St. Lucia. We are not all money hungry. There are good Samaritans and we’ll work with them because I have a god child studying in Taiwan and I would hate to know that she was in this situation. These are people’s children, their parents paid money up front, mortgaged and did what they had to do and you know what we do as parents to make sure that our children have the best in life”.

Audin said whilst she is happy that the matter is before the courts she is somewhat disheartened as she said the St. Lucian legal system is still too slow.

She also said that she is doubtful that the charges will stick to the four men accused of money laundering and human trafficking.

She said; “They’ve already pleaded not guilty and as far as I’m concerned, they said these people (the students) came willingly, knowing what they were getting into…it’s where the wind blows”.

Audin said the students simply want what they paid for, an education, boarding and jobs.

So far there has been no reaction to the plight of the students from the Ministry of Education.

1 Comment

  1. Marguerite, whatever you do for others God will do for you, keep up the good work and lad by example.

    May God bless you in all your ways.

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