August 1, 2012 issue

Community Connection

Customer service takes top priority at R&S Cargo
Roy Singh...started R&S to better serve his customers

By Arti Panday
Whether it's charitable merchandise for foundations overseas or modern appliances for a Caribbean oasis, there is no longer any hassle in shipping goods across the world.
After working with other companies for quite some time, Roy Singh decided to open R&S Cargo ten years ago, determined to set his focus on customer service.
"He was working with other companies for a while but he decided opening R&S would be better for him to serve his customers," said Geeta Maraj, a consultant at R&S Cargo.
Customer service is the main goal for the company, which is why the customers are involved with every step of the shipment process. From packaging to pick up, shipments can be closely monitored.
"Customers are able to use our warehouse and have a first-hand view of where the shipment is and how it's being shipped," said Maraj. "If they need it, they can also be advised on how they can best ship their products."
With door-to-door shipping services customers also have the opportunity to pack their shipment in the comfort of their home and schedule a time for it to be picked up and taken straight to the warehouse for delivery directly to the destination.
Rebuilding a home and furnishing it with modern appliances has never been easier as well. R&S has been noticing an increasing number of customers creating modern environments for retirement and vacation homes. By using the door-to-door shipping service, R&S helps customers transform spaces.
Coordinating with agents in over five Caribbean countries, R&S Cargo works diligently to provide the best and most efficient customer service possible.
In addition to shipping personal goods and products, R&S is also instrumental in helping charitable donations reach recipients.
"R&S gives great encouragement for charitable donations. We try to give good rates to people looking to donate barrels and items. You don't have to wait for a tsunami or mudslide to help and give back," said Maraj.
For the delivery of donated items, R&S Cargo helps cover the cost in order to encourage customers to donate as much as they possibly can.
Although the company maintains competitive pricing, customer service is so important that they would even suggest using another service provider for a certain shipment depending on the cost and convenience of the shipment.
The warehouse is currently located in a two-unit facility in Mississauga. R&S is looking forward to increasing the size of the donation unit and expanding their reach to other Caribbean countries.
The average package takes approximately three to four weeks to arrive at the destination and customers can track their merchandise from start to finish.

 

Island Soul Festival Aug 3-6

Harbourfront Centre's Island Soul Festival, presented by CIBC (Aug 3-6), is a three-day cultural explosion of Caribbean arts and revelry that highlights the contributions of local and international Caribbean artists.
This year, Island Soul delivers a world-class celebration of Caribbean culture with special events to commemorate Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago's 50th Anniversary of Independence and to showcase the kaleidoscope of cultural and artistic traditions found throughout the island nations.
Island Soul Festival highlights include:
§ A Jamaican 50th concert featuring current Wailers' frontman and rising Jamaican reggae star Duane Stephenson; a Tribute to the Grandmaster Calpypsonian Lord Kitchener, one of Trinidad's foremost calypso musicians; a rare live performance from legendary Calypsionan The Mighty Shadow; and a bashment party with Jamaican dancehall deejay Admiral Bailey;
§ A Jump for Jamaica Dance choreographed by Kevin A. Ormsby to celebrate the milestone of Jamaica's 50th anniversary of independence;
§ Traditional dance, music and drama from Caribbean Folk Performers and Afro-Caribbean Drum and Dance Theatre
§ A colourful 'Ole Mas' Jouvay Parade along the waterfront featuring traditional carnival costume characters with Theatre Archipelago; · …And more!
"Island Soul festival has been a cornerstone of Harbourfront Centre's summer season for many years. It strives to capture the best artistic forms from across the Caribbean, North America and beyond and makes the connections back to its African roots," says Melanie Fernandez, Harbourfront Centre's Director of Community and Educational Programmes. "Over many years the best global artists have graced our stages during this event, so we are proud to have CIBC as a partner in supporting this legacy."
"CIBC is proud to partner with the Harbourfront Centre – one of Toronto's foremost community, arts and cultural gathering places – to present Island Soul this summer," says Veni Iozzo, Senior Vice-President, CIBC Marketing and Strategy.
For additional information and complete event listings, the public may visit harbourfrontcentre.com/summer or call the Information Hotline at 416-973-4000. Harbourfront Centre is located at 235 Queens Quay West in the heart of downtown Toronto's waterfront.

Pandit Sirju Persaud Misir 1923 - 2012
Dedicated to the Memory of Panditji for his life example in
Sat (Truth) and Ahimsa (Non Violence)
Pandit Misir preached and practised non violence through thought, word and deed. He bespoke gentleness and humility, reaching out to all who had the pleasure of meeting him, and comforting anyone who sought respite from pain. In the name of his beloved Sanatan Dharma, he gave freely of himself to all causes of humanity. His smile will be permanently etched into the memories of all who had the opportunity to cross his path. Pt. Sirju Persaud Misir's legacy lives on in the thousands of lives that he touched. May his Spirit continue to inspire us towards compassion, humility and love.
"Just as in this body the embodied soul passes into infancy, youth and old age also does the soul pass into another body. The wise man does not grieve about this."

 

Jamaica Land We Love GALA - Inspired by Hope Gardens
Hope Gardens, Jamaica

On Saturday, August 11 beginning at 5:30 p.m., the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (South Building) will host the Jamaica Land We Love GALA – a spectacular four-part evening with a feast for the senses. During Dinner in Hope Gardens, guests will dine on fine Jamaican-inspired cuisine surrounded by four gardens evocative by Jamaica's Royal Botanical Gardens – popularly known as Hope Gardens. Spanning over 200 acres and famous for its rare and lush tropical plants and trees. Hope Gardens is the largest botanical garden in the Caribbean.
With support from the Jamaican Horticultural Society, winners of a gold medal at the 2012 Chelsea Garden Show in London, England the Ontario Landscape Association, the City of Toronto Greenhouse Operations, and a group of dedicated volunteer GTA gardeners and florists, the four gardens within the hall will creatively bring the Jamaican landscape to Toronto! Inspired by garden "muses", Jamaica 50 Co-Chair Pamela Appelt, Mary Ito of CBC, MPP Margarett Best and many others – anthuriums, heliconias, orchids, pink and red ginger, and agapanthus are just some of the flowers contributing to this one-of-a-kind viewing experience.
Tickets for the four-part GALA evening including The '62 reception, Dinner in Hope Gardens, Jamaica Jubilee and The After Party are on sale now for $175. For the '62 reception, Jamaica Jubilee and The After Party only, tickets are available for $75. To purchase tickets online please visit www.ticketgateway.com or visit www.jamaica50.ca for more information. Part proceeds from the Jamaica Land We Love GALA will be donated to The Jamaican Canadian Legacy Endowment Fund.

 

Removing the challenges of importing from China

Canadian businesses importing goods from China now have access to an interest-free, unsecured line of credit to finance their imports with the introduction of AccordOctet, a unique, easy-to-use, trade financing solution. This non-bank solution is ideal for small businesses which do not want to encumber their limited current cash flows and working capital.
Launched in June by Accord Financial Ltd., a subsidiary of Accord Financial Corp. (TSX:ACD), a public company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange, AccordOctet eliminates the challenges faced by importers who are frustrated by language barriers, financing setbacks, excessive paperwork, and Chinese suppliers who require guaranteed payment before going into production to fill their orders.
"AccordOctet provides a dynamic and practical finance and logistical tool that eliminates the challenges faced by importers from China, allowing them to maximize trade flows and opportunities for growth," says Simon Hitzig, President of Accord Financial Ltd.
"The requirement for guaranteed payments by Chinese suppliers is perhaps one of the biggest challenges for Canadian small businesses, many of which do not have ready access to bank-issued lines and letters of credit," says Aiman Dally, CEO of Toronto-based Copia Financial Solutions.
As well, "small and medium-sized Chinese manufacturers find it difficult to obtain loans from state-run banks which typically lend only to large corporations, many of which are also state run," adds Dally. These manufacturers are forced to rely on the unregulated, underground lending market which charges exorbitantly high interest rates. As a result, there is intense pressure for guaranteed or early payments from importers – a role which AccordOctet fulfills.
Hitzig says: "with AccordOctet, there are no hassles, no delays, no letters of credit; payment is made the next business day, keeping the Chinese supplier happy and providing the Canadian importer with an opportunity to gain preferred buyer status; enhanced negotiating power; and supplier loyalty."
When using AccordOctet, both buyer and seller are members of a closed network that securely allows the seamless flow of funds and documentation. The web-based solution is facilitated by a state-of-the-art online portal using an encrypted transaction card. Both buyer and supplier have access to the secure portal when initiating a transaction. Upon the importer's authorization, Accord pays the supplier the next business day.
Importers then have up to 60 days interest-free to repay Accord. Up to 50% of the amount outstanding can be deferred for an additional 30 days but will be subject to an interest charge. Importers pay only a small transaction fee, similar to a merchant fee on a credit card, which can often be negotiated with the seller. Essentially, AccordOctet is as simple to use as a credit card and works pretty much the same way.
The program is already a proven success. It was pioneered in 2008 by Hong Kong-based Octet Trading Limited and has grown to nearly 1200 members transacting from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan into Australia.
The AccordOctet program manages each step of the purchase order and settlement process based on agreed commercial terms. It incorporates document tracking and an upload facility for the entire supply chain cycle, including purchase orders, pro forma invoices, invoices, inspection certificates and bills of lading, and maintains detailed historical information on prior transactions, including uploaded documentation and authorizations. It also provides real time account details, including: credit limit, available credit, current balance, exchange rates, interest rates, upcoming payments, fees and charges and is available in English and Chinese.
For now, AccordOctet is the only trade financing solution of its kind in Canada and is expected to be a big benefit to businesses buying goods from China.

 

InKarma Golf Tournament

The InKarma Community Association will be donating the proceeds of their 10th Annual Golf Tournament to The Caribbean Children Foundation. The tourney will take place at Braeben Golf Course, 5700 Terry Fox Way, Mississauga on Friday August 24, 2012. For more info, please contact Syd (416) 722-9434, Ryan (647) 261-8973, or email info@inkarma.org - www.inkarma.org.

 

QC Alumni Caribana Dance

Toronto Chapter of the Queen's College of Guyana Alumni Association Caribana dance, August 3 from 8.00 p.m at St. Luke's Anglican Church Hall , 904 Coxwell Ave. Music by the band Storm and DJ Solid Goald. Tickets $50.00 per person. Call 416-267-7227 or visit www.qcalumnitoronto.com.

 

Caribbean/South Asian Showcase

Ranji Singh Foundation presents Caribbean & South Asian Showcase, Saturday, September 8th 2012 from noon - 7:00 p.m at Newmarket Riverwalk Commons, 200 Doug Duncan Drive, Newmarket. Free Admission. Sponsors invited. For sponsorship info, call 416-801-6756.

 

26th Annual Bush Lot Picnic

The 26th Annual Bush Lot Picnic will be held on September 1, 2012 at Wild Wood Park. For more info call: Raj (905)420-2433 or Sam (416) 258-16540. Please BYO basket.

 

BEI Alumni Dinner & Dance

Berbice Educational Institute Alumni Association will be holding a Dinner and Dance on September 1st, 2012 at the Empire Banquet Hall in Toronto. Tickets are $60 per person. For more information, call Paul Bacchus @ 416-723-7117.

 

TCCF Summa Lime Picnic

TCCF will hold its Annual Caribbean Flava Summa Lime Family Picnic on Saturday August 11, 2012 at Wild Wood Park, 3430 Derry Rd, Mississauga from 1pm to 8pm. General $5; Kids under 5 FREE. Great food, music and entertainment throughout the day. Be a sponsor, contact Ilene at 905-840-6484. This is a TCCF fundraiser and 100% of the proceeds raised go directly towards helping one of our Angel Kids.

 

 
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