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JIS News

Sixteen tablet computers and a laptop have been presented to children living in the Salt Spring community of St. James, under the No Student Left Behind electronics campaign.

The initiative is the brainchild of the Salt Spring Community Outreach Programme for Empowerment (SSCOPE) International Limited, which handed over the devices on Wednesday (December 30), at the Salt Spring Peace and Justice Centre.

Local Chapter President of SSCOPE, Rochelle Cawley, told JIS News that the computers are to assist the children who attend primary and secondary institutions to gain access to the various online learning platforms for their educational needs.

“This No Student Left Behind initiative was born out of the fact that COVID-19 came and a lot of students were getting left behind because they didn’t have devices. So, we started working as there was a need,” Ms. Cawley said.

She explained that through fundraising and international sponsors from the body’s US and Canadian chapters, the two-year-old charitable organisation was able to procure the tablets in addition to a laptop for the community’s neediest children.

“Our organisation’s motto is ‘Community Capacity Building, One Family at a Time’. Also, whatever we are doing we try to preserve people’s dignity [because] the people who need the things the most are the ones who are not going to say anything. So, that is what we are about – we try to help in whatever way we can,” Ms. Cawley said.

One beneficiary, Kyon Downs, a student of Cornwall College in the parish, said he is grateful for the donation, as it means he will have an easier time preparing for his upcoming Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations.

“I have been having a lot of trouble as it relates to doing my school-based assessment (SBA), as I am in grade 11 preparing for my CSEC examinations. So, I got a Samsung laptop and I am quite happy,” he added.

A parent, Shernette Richards, said the new tablet is sure to increase her daughter’s focus in her online classes, as she no longer has to share devices with her siblings.

“I really appreciate this [and] it (campaign) is really important, because the children will use the tablets to do their schoolwork,” Ms. Richards said.

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