Thieves Strike Non-Profit’s Garden Over Holiday

May 26, 2015

[Updated] While thousands of people were celebrating the Bermuda Day holiday, a thief [or thieves] made off with a crop of corn from the Kaleidoscope Arts Foundation – corn that was being tended to by young children and was expected to raise about $800 to help fund the registered charity’s programmes.

The theft occurred from the garden of the Kaleidoscope Arts Foundation, a non-profit community arts center dedicated to teaching art to children.

The eventual yield of corn was intended to help fund a further enrichment program, and was expected to bring in some $800 for the program, which operates out of facilities on Jubilee Road in Devonshire.

Not only did the thieves steal the corn, they destroyed part of the garden as well

Corn Garden May 2015 Bermuda (4)

The primary school students who had planted and tended the garden hailed from schools including Prospect Primary, Elliot, and Victor Scott, leading Kaleidoscope teacher Omari Dill to point out the thieves stole from children, asking what type of example does that set.

Kaleidoscope’s Fiona Rodriguez-Roberts told Bernews, “Our garden needs donations to function; we’re a non-profit. One way to not be completely dependent was for us to have our own cash-crop, and we planted a full beautiful crop of corn which was supposed to bring in a nice yield of $800, which is a big chunk of money for our non-profit.”

“Over the weekend, a lovely Bermuda Day, we come back and our corn has been taken by night thieves. So we have maybe $50 worth of corn which we’re going to sell,” Ms Rodriguez-Roberts added.

A box of corn shows what remained of the crop after the theft

Corn Garden May 2015 Bermuda (8)

Mr. Dill said, “They completely raided and destroyed what they didn’t take. And I’m from the area, so I know that it’s part of a string of robberies that’s been happening in private homes and gardens, and now at Kaleidoscope.

“It’s not the first or second time that Kaleidoscope has been broken into, and it just gives me a whole lot of disgust, partly because I feel that I might even know the people who did it,” added Mr Dill.

“And the people who are doing it are affecting the places that are taking care of their children, essentially, that’s teaching their children the right way – what kind of example is this?”

Kaleidoscope’s Fiona Rodriguez-Roberts and Omari Dill:

Ms. Rodriguez-Roberts said, “Enough was taken that these guys sold it, they made a profit from what we were bringing in to go back into an enrichment program. They didn’t feed themselves with it…they took our hard labour. It’s really frustrating.”

“They stole from children – for the children to come in now and see this after Bermuda Day they are vexed,” said Mr Dill, adding, “The irritating part is that we don’t even have a bag [of corn] to give to those children so they can take it to their families…”

Anyone with information about the theft can contact the police on 295-0011, or contact Kaleidoscope directly via their website. Those wishing to donate to the non-profit can also do so via their website.

Update May 27, 11.59am: Donations to the Kaleidoscope Arts Foundation can be made directly to Bank of Butterfield account 20-006-060-807-509-100.

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Comments (28)

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  1. Oh man says:

    You would think someone would have a little more respect!! Stealing from children smh

    • Vote For Me OW says:

      Karma is a b*tch. To the thieves, may your family members choke on the stolen corn.

      • N says:

        I say let the thieves choke, IF the family members don’t realize where the corn came from.
        Very sad situation.

  2. Doug says:

    pathetic

  3. cow polly says:

    They destroyed what they didn’t take? So punks then!

  4. stunned... says:

    scumbags

  5. Triangle Drifter says:

    Hope they are caught & given the most severe of penalties on the books possible.

  6. sage says:

    Worst kind of thieves. Ought to be ashamed of themselves.

  7. Come on now says:

    So sad. Who stoops that low??

  8. Greenrock says:

    Some things just cause you to shake your head in disbelief – thieves night farming our children’s crops. I hope the children who have worked in the garden and the entire Kaleidoscope Arts Foundation community soon feel the love of our larger Bermuda community. This is a wonderful programme where the talented and gifted Bermudian agronomist Omari Dill teaches our children the art of gardening in an inspirational setting.

  9. Prince says:

    These thieves are nothing but low lifes. When caught send them away for 10 years with no parole. They won’t do it again and anyone else will think twice.

  10. gnosis of gnosis says:

    maybe Scientist was trying to make a crop circle

  11. Edwin says:

    LOWER THAN A SNAKE’S BELLY TO THE GROUND.

  12. maria says:

    wow this is really very sad.some one raided our flower garden.pulled the sun flower plants rested to the ground and took our pots with potting soil.!what a rotten mind!

  13. Triangle Drifter says:

    Retribution should be hand tool digging of that garden in the summer heat.

  14. D Wilson says:

    What a shame. Further fulfillment of 2Timothy 3: 1-5. Selfish, greedy & heartless thieves.
    Don’t let this discourage you or the children. Unfortunately this is a cruel lesson to learn in life.
    Rise above this and I’m sure you’re hard work will be rewarded in someway.
    Hope they catch those Heartless thieves.

  15. Nibbler says:

    At 8-9$ a bag in stores no wonder this happened. It will continue to happen until food prices are lowered. Bermudians deserve affordable fruits and vegetables. Unfortuna the children were the victims here

  16. EcoCentricMindset says:

    KAF – May you please provide your account details for donations? Your website unfortunately does not provide these details or an interface to facilitate transactions.

  17. Truth is killin' me... says:

    Incidents like this are when people need to speak up. If you know someone selling corn that never has before then call the man and let them know. If you don’t say something then you are just as bad as the thief.

  18. michael says:

    While I do not agree with most of the hard line approach of more primitive cultures, I think if someone steals after being caught and prosecuted in the courts once already, they should have a finger surgically removed for each theft they commit thereafter. Five strikes and you are out (of business)!

    If you are hungry, there are places and organizations that will feed you. If you are poor, there are jobs to be done that will pay you. There is never an excuse for stealing. This island is in a struggle of good over evil. Giving these people time in prison is like a holiday from responsibility while the rest of us drag ourselves out of bed each morning and go to work to provide for our families.

    As a society, if we can’t bring ourselves to amputation of a finger, then bring back the stockades, place these criminals in them so that the entire island can see who are the thieves and be more aware of when they are in our presence and community.

    Prison DOES NOT WORK for most who are incarcerated.

    • Mockingjay says:

      Does that go for White color (collar) crime too.

      • michael says:

        Absolutely Mockingjay! They are just as bad and sometimes worse!

        Now that we are in agreement, can I ask…does EVERY topic in Bermuda have to be about race?

        Stealing is stealing. All races are capable and participate in illegal activity such as theft.

  19. Straight up says:

    From the picture, that corn looks good! Where are the remaining bags of corn being sold?

  20. drew says:

    Times like this is where the stocks down in St. Georges should come back into use on the perpetrators if they are caught. It is a real shame for those kids who worked so hard. So publicly shame the ones who did this. And use the same corn to through at them. But dry it out first.

  21. Joonya says:

    Pieces of Sh*#. They probably drove away in their BMW which is registered in their Mommy’s house.

  22. Stolen more than crops? says:

    Programmes such as these are so important to our community. Teaching our children basic farming principles will allow them to also(hopefully)understand the value of (living)sustainability. It is so unfortunate these theives have not only stolen their joy – but their full appreciation and experience in harvesting. If they were hungry, these kids would’ve been able to show them how to grow their own crops for sustenance. Living a minimalistic and simplistic life is something many of us Bermudians have lost touch with. It is up to us to reinforce the beauty of nature to our children in hopes that they will grow to appreciate and protect it for years to come – but this must start with us and our own actions. KAF and Omari – Thank you for all that you do.

  23. my view says:

    This is a bad experience for the children that tended the crop and it would appear it was ready for harvest. I can’t amagine how I would have felt at a very young age to have this happen. I can only say that when there is this type of bad something good will come. I believe the general public will make a bad situation good for these children and the wonderful work being done at this non-profit organisation.
    Their account # is captured in their story ,so lets make these children whole again by leting them know we care. They need to know people do good too.