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Child Month 2014 was organised under the theme “Parents Take Responsibility: Break the Cycle” which focused on the power of positive parenting.
The way parents interact with their children has a direct effect on their development – their level of confidence and self-esteem, their sense of security, their emotional well-being, the way they relate to others, how they deal with authority, and their performance in school.
Given the importance of parenting and the ripple effect it has on nation building, the National Child Month Committee (NCMC) came up with several activities for the month that focused on bringing parent and child together in a positive way. The prime item was the “31 Steps to Better Parenting” Calendar that instructed parents to do at least positive activity with their child everyday for the month.
In the true Jamaican spirit, Child Month began with a church service at the Hampton Green Gospel Chapel at the corner of St. John’s Road and Grant’s Crescent, Spanish Town, St. Catherine.
The NCMC also organized several events geared at lifting up Jamaica’s children. Take a look at their effort at the St. William Grant Park in downtown Kingston on National Children’s Day on May 16. The NCMC, along with their sponsors, handed out goodies and hugs to children, reminding them of how special they are.
A team from the JIS Public Relations Department also took the opportunity to brighten the children’s day at the Half-Way-Tree Transport Centre.
This year, for the first time, the NCMC recognized academic excellence among students from non-traditional high schools at the NCMC Youth Academic Achievement Awards ceremony.
Twenty-four students from 22 non-traditional high schools, the Salvation Army School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, and the Lister Mair Gilby High School were recognised for their outstanding achievement.
Chairman of the NCMC, Dr. Pauline Mullings explained that, “today for the first time we will be honouring selected students from non-traditional high schools who have overcome great odds and achieved outstanding results in their CSEC Examinations”.
The recipients attained five or more subjects and also be involved in community service, Dr. Mullings noted.
Eighteen year old Jaffet McDonald, formerly of Guys Hill High School in St. Catherine was adjudged the top student. Jaffet attained 10 subjects with nine distinctions at the 2013 sitting of the CSEC examinations. He is currently in lower sixth form at St. Mary High School.
The other recipients included:
Ralisa Dawkins, Salvation Army School for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Shana-Kay Gooden, Lister Mair Gilby High School
Alex Henry, Denham Town High
Derrick Hoffenden, Kingston High
Nicole Williams, Papine High
Bilton Mills, Tarrant High
Courtney Harris, Penwood High