Press Release
21 January 2019 - 12:15pm

Students of the Joyce Samuel Primary School were recently treated to readings from ‘The Irma Diaries’ by local author Angela Burnett.

The session included active student discussions around the life lessons communicated by each of the Irma survivor stories shared.

The session marked the first of many that will take place this school term as a part of ‘The Irma Diaries’ Read to Heal programme officially launched last November at the Alexandrina Maduro Primary School.

Ms. Burnett says that she is pleased and grateful to see the business community contribute to the worthwhile programme Read to Heal for the benefit of the young people of the Virgin Islands.

She said, “Two reading sessions have already taken place under the programme at the Elmore Stoutt High School and Willard Wheatley Primary School. The reading at Joyce Samuel was held in partnership with Ogier during their weekly reading session there.  Ogier has sponsored 20 copies of ‘The Irma Diaries’ for the programme that have been donated to the school.”

The stories captured provide mechanisms for dealing with loss, encourage appreciation of the essentials in life, and present optimistic perspectives on the future. ‘The Irma Diaries’ includes a Foreword and Afterword by leading climate scientists, a primer on climate change and includes linkages throughout the stories that bring climate change home, making it personal and relevant for students.

Ogier is one of 15 companies that has sponsored copies of the book for schools to facilitate the programme. All together over 270 copies have been sponsored. Copies were handed over to most school principals at their joint meeting on Tuesday. Other donors include BDO, BVI Finance, Carey Olsen, Caribbean Insurers Ltd, Harneys, Hon. Archibald Christian, James Todman Construction, JOMA (Properties) Ltd., LJD VI Block Ltd., Meridian Construction, the National Bank of the Virgin Islands Ltd., Ogier, One Mart Superstore, Rufred Forbes and Associates (RFA Construction), Sable Trust and the author herself.

Read to Heal provides psychosocial support and climate change education to students at all schools across the Territory through readings from ‘The Irma Diaries’ which allow students to process their trauma through the shared experiences of others.  Persons interested in volunteering to read and host discussions with students under Read to Heal can sign up through ‘The Irma Diaries’ website:

Photo captions: 

  1. Author of The Irma Diaries, Angela Burnett, reads to students at the Joyce Samuel Primary School as a part of the Read to Heal programme. Pictured also is Ray Wearmouth, Partner at Ogier, sponsor of books for the school.


  1. Principals of private and public primary and secondary schools across the Territory pose with ‘The Irma Diaries’ author as donated copies of the book are handed over.


Berta McKelly Adams

Assistant Information Officer
Department of Information & Public Relations 
Telephone: 468-2740

Ministry or Department Associated with this News Article:

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