JSIF Provides $3 Million for Summer Camps for At-Risk Youth

Photo: Mark Bell Managing Director of the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), Omar Sweeney (second left), and Deputy Commissioner of Police, Novelette Grant (right), sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) implemented Summer Camp 2017 on July 17 at the JSIF Oxford Road offices in Kingston. Signing at left is Chairman of Operation Friendship, Dr. Webster Edwards. The camp targets at-risk youth in five communities within the World Bank-funded Integrated Community Development Project (ICDP). Standing (from left) are: Procurement Manager for JSIF, Suzette Livermore East; Social Officer for the ICDP, Shunelle Nevers, and JSIF Social Development Manager, Mona Sue- Ho. The initiative involves JSIF, the JCF and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information and is in response to the growing need for targeted social interventions to foster positive youth development.

Story Highlights

  • The Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) is providing $3 million in grants for the staging of several summer camps targeting 700 at-risk youth.
  • Under Summer Camp 2017, the JSIF will provide the money for the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) to support five residential summer camps across the 18 communities that fall under its Integrated Community Development Project (ICDP), which is funded through a loan from the World Bank.
  • Managing Director of JSIF, Omar Sweeney, said the partnership complements the strategy of the JCF to deliver summer camps which target high-risk youth and support behaviour modification and positive youth development.

The Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) is providing $3 million in grants for the staging of several summer camps targeting 700 at-risk youth.

Under Summer Camp 2017, the JSIF will provide the money for the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) to support five residential summer camps across the 18 communities that fall under its Integrated Community Development Project (ICDP), which is funded through a loan from the World Bank.

The camps are being established in partnership with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information in response to the growing need for targeted social interventions to foster positive youth development.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the entities during the launch of the programme on July 17 at JSIF’s Oxford Road offices in Kingston.

The two-week residential summer camps will be held between July 9 and August 24.

Camp facilitators and counsellors will be mobilised from the Community Safety and Security Branch, the Corporate Communications Unit (CCU), Mobile Reserve as well as participating schools.

Managing Director of JSIF, Omar Sweeney, said the partnership complements the strategy of the JCF to deliver summer camps which target high-risk youth and support behaviour modification and positive youth development.

“This partnership recognises that improved community safety and crime prevention requires that the police act in partnership with the general public and with other Government, private and voluntary sector organisations to deliver collaborative services that will address crime, fear of crime and other safety issues which concern communities,” he said.

He noted that this strategy is part of the National Crime Prevention and Community Safety Strategy (NCPCSS), with a focus on high-risk groups, particularly in the 15 to 24 age cohort.

Assistant Commissioner of Police, Warren Clarke, read a message from Police Commissioner, George Quallo, who expressed his gratitude for the substantial donation by JSIF.

He noted that partnerships of this nature are essential for achieving positive, sustainable changes.

“Through a shared vision for youth development, violence prevention and reduction as well as nation building, the JCF and JSIF have been solid partners. Through the years, our two agencies have maintained a collaborative partnership which has seen us working together in volatile areas,” Commissioner Quallo said.

Meanwhile, key architect of the summer programme, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Novelette Grant, said the programme is in response to the nexus between youth violence, school and street gangs and the impact on general community violence.

“We recognise the level of neglect, abuse, and overall negative life experiences that impact youth in underserved communities and how this, in turn, undermines their efficacy as fully functional, productive citizens. This programme has been life changing for the participants and we are very happy for the continued interest and support,” she said.

The partnership is part of JSIF’s wider Summer Camp 2017 initiative which will provide grant funding of $22 million to fund a total of 32 camps across the 18 ICDP communities targeting a total of 5,009 beneficiaries.

JIS Social