Sport and National Security Ministries Come Together to Upgrade Facilities in Juvenile Institutions

Photo: Michael Sloley Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange (left); Minister of State in the Ministry of National Security, Senator the Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr. (centre) and Commissioner, Department of Correctional Services, Ina Hunter, examine condiments and other baked goods on display that were produced by juvenile offenders at the Rio Cobre Juvenile Correctional Centre. Occasion was a ‘We Transform’ Competition and Exposition at the Girl Guides Association of Jamaica headquarters in Kingston, on September 27.

Story Highlights

  • The Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport is to partner with the Ministry of National Security to develop and upgrade sporting facilities in the island’s juvenile institutions.
  • This was disclosed by Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange during the ‘We Transform’ Competition and Exposition for juvenile offenders, at the Girl Guides Association of Jamaica headquarters in Kingston, on September 27.
  • Meanwhile, Minister of State in the Ministry of National Security, Senator the Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., said the initiative is ensuring that young people are given a second chance at becoming productive members of society, and thanked Minister Grange for partnering with the National Security Ministry.

The Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport is to partner with the Ministry of National Security to develop and upgrade sporting facilities in the island’s juvenile institutions.

This was disclosed by Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange during the ‘We Transform’ Competition and Exposition for juvenile offenders, at the Girl Guides Association of Jamaica headquarters in Kingston, on September 27.

“I will work with you to see to the upgrade of the sports infrastructure in the institutions. The same way we can upgrade facilities in communities and facilities in schools, we can upgrade facilities in the institutions,” Ms. Grange said.

The Minister explained that one of the goals of the Ministry is to develop a culture of physical activeness in Jamaica. “We want more Jamaicans to play sports more often. That means we have to ensure that all Jamaicans have access to participate in sport, whether they are in a transformational space or not,” she said.

In the meantime, Ms. Grange noted that the Ministry has embarked on a programme to develop sports infrastructure at the national level, in schools and communities.

She said so far this year, infrastructural development has been completed at eight high schools, including playfield upgrades at Lacovia High, Haile Selassie High, St. Jago High, Paul Bogle High,

William Knibb High and Tarrant High, while the gymnasium, long jump pit and multipurpose court resurface was done at Mavis Bank High, and change room and bathroom facilities were upgraded at Happy Grove High School.

“We are determined to build our country’s reputation in every creative endeavour, including sports. I am confident that some of you who are being transformed through this ‘We transform’ initiative will play a leading role in building Jamaica’s brand,” Ms. Grange added.

She said it is hoped that the beneficiaries of the ‘We Transform’ initiative will help the participants to become stronger, while changing their lives.

Meanwhile, Minister of State in the Ministry of National Security, Senator the Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., said the initiative is ensuring that young people are given a second chance at becoming productive members of society, and thanked Minister Grange for partnering with the National Security Ministry.

“We are depending on you to be responsible, and when you leave from this place. We intend for you to be our ‘We Transform’ ambassadors. We expect that what you go back to your communities and give will be constructive,” he told them.

He said the National Security Ministry will continue to ensure that each person who is under its care is given a fair chance.

In his remarks, Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, said his Ministry fully endorses the initiative.

The ‘We Transform’ Youth Empowerment and Reintegration programme is geared at providing children, aged 12 to 17 years, within the care and supervision of the Department of Correctional Services with the requisite skills set, character and support to become exemplary citizens.

The programme was established in 2016 and was initially branded as the Learning by Doing Technique, a student-centred approach to rehabilitation.

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