Teen Hub Opens in Half-Way Tree Transport Centre

Photo: Mark Bell Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton (second left), is in light conversation with (from left): State Minister in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green; Caribbean Regional Director, AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Dr. Kevin Harvey; and Acting Director, Health Services, Planning and Integration in the Ministry of Health, Dr. Simone Spence. Occasion was the launch of ‘Teen Hub’ on November 28, at the Half-Way Tree Transport Centre, St. Andrew.

Story Highlights

  • Adolescents who use the Half-Way Tree Transport Centre in St. Andrew now have a safe and healthy space where they can do their homework and conduct research, while benefiting from counselling and other services.
  • It is equipped with computers and other technology tools, and counselling staff will be on hand to provide guidance and healthcare information. Speaking at the launch on November 28, Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, said projects like Teen Hub will play a vital role in helping to address issues facing young people, including crime, teen pregnancies, substance abuse, and suicides.
  • He noted that in addition to the computers, printers, televisions, educational video materials and closed-circuit cameras, the facility is also equipped with a counselling room to facilitate voluntary and confidential counselling, and HIV testing as well as mental health support.

Adolescents who use the Half-Way Tree Transport Centre in St. Andrew now have a safe and healthy space where they can do their homework and conduct research, while benefiting from counselling and other services.

The newly renovated space, dubbed ‘Teen Hub’, is a collaborative effort of the AIDS Healthcare Foundation; Ministry of Health; and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information.

It is equipped with computers and other technology tools, and counselling staff will be on hand to provide guidance and healthcare information.

Speaking at the launch on November 28, Minister of Health, Dr. the Hon. Christopher Tufton, said projects like Teen Hub will play a vital role in helping to address issues facing young people, including crime, teen pregnancies, substance abuse, and suicides.

He noted that in addition to the computers, printers, televisions, educational video materials and closed-circuit cameras, the facility is also equipped with a counselling room to facilitate voluntary and confidential counselling, and HIV testing as well as mental health support.

Peer educators, he said, will be available Monday to Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

“Not to be ignored is the need for the maintenance of healthy lifestyle choices, which include avoiding harmful substances. These issues will also be addressed through the available channels here at the hub,” he pointed out.

Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, said that the period of adolescence is a time when individuals tend to become engaged in risky practices.

“It is during this period that interventions become necessary in order to guide the teens, and this is why this hub and the support systems that are going to be put in place will be vital,” he said.

He further noted that the collaborative effort with the Health Ministry is particularly fruitful at a time when attention has to be paid to the overall well-being of Jamaica’s youth.

Teen Hub is located on the lower level of the Transport Centre.

JIS Social