Prime Minister Andrew Holness has lauded American Friends of Jamaica (AFJ) for its sterling contribution to philanthropy. “The programs and contributions of the AFJ continue to impact our beloved island Jamaica, but particularly the people in very specific and impressive ways”.
Students have benefitted
In his message to mark AFJ’s 2018 Hummingbird Gala on Friday, October 26, 2018 at the Plaza Hotel in New York, Prime Minister Holness said, the AFJ, through its contribution and impact in the education sector, several students have benefitted from improved programs and assistance from schools with which the AFJ partnered.
The Prime Minister said, “Students with the potential for greatness have had their education financed and institutions have had their facilities improved. These would not have been possible without the contributions from the AFJ. Among the beneficiaries are scholarship recipients from the University of the West Indies (UWI), the Alpha Institute and the Bull Savannah Primary School”.
Contribution to health sector
Prime Minister Holness added that AFJs contribution to Jamaica’s health sector is worthy of commendation. He said that Jamaica has benefitted from donations in cash and kind and that institutions such as the St. Ann’s Bay and Cornwall Regional Hospitals are just two of the medical institutions to benefit from the AFJs benevolence. The Prime Minister pointed out that the contribution to the Cornwall Regional Hospital is especially significant as it is one of the country’s premier teaching institutions located in the main tourism area of the country.
Mr. Holness emphasized that the country was now on the path to building a strong economy where everyone can live, work, raise families and do business. He said that the AFJs contributions to the economic well-being of persons in many of the communities in which they have worked compliments the governments overall drive to make Jamaica a prosperous country. Helping to make communities strong will ultimately lead to a stronger Jamaica.
In her message, Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency Audrey Marks said that over the 36 years of its existence, the AFJ has distinguished itself as an outstanding organization which has devoted its philanthropic efforts to the poor and needy in Jamaica.
Over US$600,000 donated
“I am pleased to note that you were able to distribute grants totaling six hundred thousand US dollars to over 40 projects in Jamaica, more than 100 percent over the previous year. This is a remarkable feat and I commend you for remaining true to your vision of a world in which all Jamaicans have access to basic education, healthcare services and economic development opportunities for a better quality of life.”
In her remarks, President of the AFJ, Ms. Wendy Hart, said the organization contributed to 63 projects in Jamaica last year to a total of six hundred thousand US dollars. She said this year, the organization will focus on three projects – Success By Six, Alpha Institute and Education – with the over 156 thousand dollars received in pledges going towards these projects.
The 2018 AFJ Hummingbird Award was presented to Founder and CEO of the New York based VP Records Mrs. Patricia Chin and President and CEO of A.J. Dwoskin & Associates, Albert J. Dwoskin.