Fifteen schools in St. James and three health institutions in Western Jamaica are the latest beneficiaries of gifts from the Atlanta Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee.
The gift comprises medical assistance scholarships, tablets, and laptop computers value at USD120,000.00.
The Cornwall Regional Hospital, The Falmouth Hospital and the Noel Holmes Hospital received well-needed oxygen value at USD70,000.00.
According to the Chairman of The Atlanta Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee, Dr. Yvonne Smith, the supply of oxygen was donated to the hospitals in July to assist with the severe shortage that they were experiencing at that time.
Dr. Smith further pointed out that her organization had distributed 131 tablets and 26 laptop computers to fifteen education institutions, of which 13 are in St. James, 1 in Trelawny and 1 in Kingston. Among those receiving tablets and laptops are Adelphi Primary School, Adelphi Garden Basic School, Goodwill Primary School, Sudbury All-Age School, Barrett Town All-Age School, Dumfries All-Age School, Muchette High School, Cornwall College, and the University of the West Indies.
Dr. Smith said the package of tablets and laptop computers is a joint project undertaking by The Atlanta Sister Cities Committee in association with the Victoria House Foundation, which is headquarters in Washington, DC. She said this joint effort was geared towards advancing education through technology in public schools within Montego Bay and its environs.
Dr. Smith stated that the donations are timely, given the widespread use of virtual learning in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic and its adverse effects on the developing countries.
She pointed out that both associations deemed it a moral responsibility to contribute to nation-building, she reiterated that they are committed to preserving the future of Jamaica through the social and academic development of the youth.
She stated that this was the first time that the two non-profit organizations were partnering to support the drive to enhance education in Jamaica as it was well needed at this time due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
She stated that the CEO of Victoria House Mr. McFarlane Okonta, who secured the laptop computers, will be working closely with the schools to provide technical support and maintenance of the equipment.
Dr. Smith stated that her organization has provided five scholarships valued at USD2,000.00 each to two medical students at the University of the West Indies. The recipients are, Husani Hogg and Rihana Morrison. A further three scholarships valued at USD500.00 each have been given for Shaka’rah Christe, a student at St. James High School who received the Vin Martin Memorial Scholarship in honor of the Late Mr. Vin Martin who served as Chairman of The Atlanta Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee and Jamaica’s Honary Counsel to Atlanta. Mr Martin passed away on July 23, 2014. The other two scholarships went to Loriean Houslin and Tiandra Brady both of Montego Bay High School.
The Montego Bay Atlanta Sister Cities has established relationships between both Cities for almost fifty years. Their signature health mission, which was renamed in honor of the Late Mr. Vin Martin, has contributed over USD2 million in medicines and medical supplies to that City for over fifteen years. Each year its health mission visits Montego Bay to deliver health care along with medication and medical supplies to hundreds of citizens. The annual health mission lasts for one week.