As the inspiration for this foundation, Claudette Caesar Loncke has set the direction in which it will operate. In addition to providing extensive benefits, the foundation will also support the elderly community of Essequibo Coast. Yearly Gala and food and sundries gifts will be at the heart of the support for the elders.
Mother, grandmother, great grand-mother, daughter, sister, friend, servant of the Lord, Claudette Caesar (Loncke) is a phenomenal woman!
Her early life was nurtured with love. She was the second oldest of 5 children but assumed the responsibility of oldest child. From the age of 10, she took her younger brother under her wings-giving her mother the time needed to work and care for her family. She attended primary school and pride herself with never failing in any subject.
Claudette Caesar enjoyed being educated and educating others, so took up the post of a Pupil Teacher, for 6 months, at the age of 15 years, teaching pupils in grade 2. She took and was successful at the examination to become a teacher but decline to pursue that goal as she didn’t want to be transferred to the Pomeroon River, a necessity to become a teacher. She later reluctantly admitted that she had a fear of rivers as she could not swim.
Though she did not fulfil that potential, Claudette Caesar was very industrious and had an appetite for success. Something that would stand her in good stead in her later life. She recalled that she obtained her first job by keeping a keen eye on the opportunities presented in her village. This came to fruition when, on an errand to do some shopping for her mother, she noticed that the said establishment had a vacancy for a cleaner. Not wanting to let the opportunity go, she sent her shopping home and immediately applied and was successful at obtaining that role and started to work on the same day!
Married at 17, she later bore 6 children who became the centre of her life. Though she became a single parent at the age of 32, and a portion of her life was marred by domestic violence, Claudette never wavered in her support for and dedicated her life to providing the best for her children.
She commenced her work at Anna Regina Multilateral School as a Maid in 1975 and later was promoted to a Cook. However, this was not her only job. Claudette also sold frozen fish, black pudding, fudge, icicle, salara and much more to supplement her income, thus providing for her family. Her work life at Anna Regina Multilateral School spanned 4 Headteachers and hundreds of graduating students. Her fondest memories are those of sitting with the dorm students to discuss the day’s events or passing them some extra goodies.
Known in the community as Granny, Cousin Claudette, neighbour Claudette, Clado, Miss Loncke, she always had an open door policy. There was always, food, care packages, a quick chat or some motherly advice for anyone who needed it.
Today, having returned from life in the USA, Claudette Caesar (Loncke) resides in the same village she spent most of her life and as a servant of the Lord, gives priority to fellowship with her church family. Though she is enjoying life at a more leisurely pace, she remains excited about life and still have an Open Door policy.
She credits her willingness to forgive, loving and caring nature and her positive attitude towards life, to her up bringing and her devotion to the Lord.