Log In

Reset Password

Olga Scott (1938-2022): Dedicated public servant who pioneered work with teenagers

First Prev 1 2 3 Next Last
Olga Scott reflects on a life of work with young people at the 50th anniversary of Teen Services (File photograph)

Olga Scott, who championed a charity for at-risk young women, was a “kind and compassionate woman” who “exemplified the very essence of public service”, according to David Burt, the Premier.

Mr Burt paid tribute at the weekend to Mrs Scott, the wife of former premier Alex Scott and mother of Robyn Eve and Lawrence Scott, the Minister of Transport.

Mrs Scott was made a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in 2009 for her services to the health, education and development of Bermuda's youth.

Mr Burt hailed her as “the visionary behind Teen Services and the fulfilment of its mission to provide support and counselling to teens and young mothers”.

He called her “a social service pioneer”.

Mrs Scott originally came to the island as a social worker from Jamaica on a two-year contract in 1967.

She was tasked with getting the children’s welfare programme Youth Health Education Development up and running.

The job involved the sexual health of young people in a conservative country, where mistrust had been sowed in the Black community on the issue of birth control, as Mrs Scott told The Royal Gazette in 2016.

“It was a time of some discomfort and disquiet in the community on the issue of contraception,” Mrs Scott recalled. “They felt at the time that they were bringing in a Black person to try and curb the Black birthrate.”

But Mrs Scott won the trust of the community as well as the young people she served.

“With my background as a social worker, I worked to help develop young people, not just to deal with their sexuality,” she said.

Dedicated: Olga Scott, social worker, civil servant, mother and wife to Alex Scott, the former Premier of Bermuda

Mrs Scott remained dedicated to Teen Services for more than 50 years.

She was a graduate of South Dakota State University with a bachelor of science degree in psychology. She also held a master’s degree in educational counselling and guidance from Indiana University.

She was recruited for her Bermuda role by Stewart Rawlins Mott, a US-born philanthropist, who addressed myriad social issues on the island.

Mrs Scott went on to serve as Teen Services’ executive director for 21 years and followed that tenure as an active board member, representing the entity on the Caribbean Family Planning Board.

One of her key achievements with the charity was working to ensure that pregnant teens and young mothers were able to continue their education.

The charity built a residential component and launched events such as the Outstanding Teens Awards.

Olga Scott (File photograph)

Mrs Scott said she was driven by “helping young Bermudians to develop, take their place in society, and overcome hardships”.

She added: “As I reflect back on it, I have had faith in God’s will.”

Mrs Scott’s work with young people also included the Continental Society of Bermuda, another charity for the island’s young people.

She was chairwoman of the trust operating the Haven in Pembroke, for women and their children in need of shelter.

It closed in 2000 and was replaced with Teen Haven.

Other charitable work including managing the rent subsidy Housing Allowance Programme in the 1990s, and serving as Director of Financial Assistance.

Mr Burt said: “During her husband’s premiership, Olga Scott was a constant and reassuring presence, ably supporting him through the rigours of public service.

“Her strength and dignity was inspiring and with her characteristic charm and sense of humour she served as an equal partner for her husband during his time as Premier and in ministerial office.”

Mr Burt also thanked Mrs Scott for her kindness to his wife, Kristin.

“On behalf of the Government and people of Bermuda I extend sincerest condolences to her family,” he said.

“As we mourn her loss and extend comfort to her husband, children and grandchildren, we remember a woman who took Bermuda and her people into her heart and in her own words said simply: ‘This is my home. That’s it!”

· Olga May Scott, a former executive director of Teen Services, was born on November 10, 1938. She died in June 2022, aged 83.

You must be Registered or to post comment or to vote.

Published June 21, 2022 at 7:57 am (Updated June 22, 2022 at 9:03 am)

Olga Scott (1938-2022): Dedicated public servant who pioneered work with teenagers

What you
Need to
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon