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Story Highlights

  • Fifty-nine persons from various inner-city communities in the Corporate Area, including nine police officers, have completed their training in the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce (JCC) Civic Affairs/Inner-city Development Committee youth leadership programme.
  • The aim of the programme is to improve the relationship between citizens and the police.
  • Since the programme’s inception in 1992, over 3,000 persons have received training.

Fifty-nine persons from various inner-city communities in the Corporate Area, including nine police officers, have completed their training in the Jamaica Chamber of Commerce (JCC) Civic Affairs/Inner-city Development Committee youth leadership programme.

The aim of the programme is to improve the relationship between citizens and the police, in order to reduce crime and to provide residents with the skills to contribute to the development of their communities.

The graduation exercise, which took place at the JCC’s Headquarters in downtown Kingston on May 22, marked the 58th cohort of the programme and saw participants being presented with certificates.

Since the programme’s inception in 1992, over 3,000 persons have received training.

Persons in this cohort were from the communities of Tivoli Gardens, Denham Town, Bull Bay, Kingston Central, Mountain View, Harbour Heights, Love Lane, Admiral Town, Water House, Franklin Town, Norman Gardens, Beeston Street, Grants Pen, Nannyville, Greater Portmore, East Kingston, Seaview Gardens, St. Thomas, Cockburn Gardens, Waltham Park Road, Spanish Town, Rollington Town, Red Hills Road, Gregory Park and Old Harbour.

Course participants were exposed to training in conflict management, interpersonal skills, human relations, community leadership, employable skills, entrepreneurship and family life, over a six-week period.

Minister with responsibility for Information, Senator the Hon. Sandrea Falconer, speaking at the graduation exercise, encouraged the graduates to use the knowledge they have gained during the training to change their lives for the better.

“Send a strong message that you are serious about taking a stand to rule your destiny. Live your life with discipline, let your voice be heard and get involved. Be bold in stepping out on this new phase of your life’s journey and never contemplate quitting because you feel that your life is too tough,” she encouraged.

Senator Falconer told the graduates to utilise the knowledge gained to achieve financial independence and contribute to the development of their communities.

“Stay focused on living a purposeful and productive life, instead of being consumed with hopelessness, doubt and misdirected energies. Whatever you do in life, be determined never to fail. If you fall down, pick yourself up, even if you have to do it 100 times,” she said.

Speaking particularly to the 10 males in the group, she urged them to inspire other men and boys to get involved.

Senator Falconer commended the JCC for their insight in developing the programme, as it assists youth in shaping their destiny.

Meanwhile, Chairman of the Inner-City Development Committee, Sameer Younis, encouraged the graduates to practise the interpersonal and conflict resolution skills taught to their counterparts and aid in the turnaround of inner-city communities.

During the ceremony, the top male, Devon Mason and top female, Erica Coombs were given scholarships to attend the University College of the Caribbean (UCC).