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JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The teaching and learning environment at Community Based Rehabilitation Jamaica (CBRJ) in Spanish Town, St. Catherine, is expected to improve significantly with the completion of the institution’s renovation, much of which was carried out during Monday’s (May 25) observance of Labour Day.
  • Scores of residents and volunteers from various communities, business and non-governmental organizations, joined members of CBRJ’s staff in carrying out repairs at the institution, which administers programmes for children and adolescents with intellectual and physical challenges.
  • The renovation entailed: repairs to the roof and ceiling as well as electrical and plumbing fixtures, and perimeter fence; landscaping; painting; and general cleaning of the compound, situated on Monk Street.

The teaching and learning environment at Community Based Rehabilitation Jamaica (CBRJ) in Spanish Town, St. Catherine, is expected to improve significantly with the completion of the institution’s renovation, much of which was carried out during Monday’s (May 25) observance of Labour Day.

Scores of residents and volunteers from various communities, business and non-governmental organizations, joined members of CBRJ’s staff in carrying out repairs at the institution, which administers programmes for children and adolescents with intellectual and physical challenges.

The renovation entailed: repairs to the roof and ceiling as well as electrical and plumbing fixtures, and perimeter fence; landscaping; painting; and general cleaning of the compound, situated on Monk Street.

The institution was selected by the Labour Day Secretariat at the St. Catherine Parish Council as the parish project.

The entity, which was formerly known as 3D Projects, was merged with Rural Services for Children with Disabilities (RSCD) in 2011, to form the Community Based Rehabilitation Jamaica, in a bid to expand the range of programmes offered to children and adolescents with intellectual and physical challenges.

Notable participants include Custos Rotulorum for St. Catherine, Hon. Rev. Jeffrey McKenzie; St. Catherine Parish Council Chairman and Spanish Town Mayor, Councillor Norman Scott; as well youngsters representing the National Youth Service (NYS), Boys Scouts and Cadets.

Also participating were representatives from the Jamaica Fire Brigade (JFB); Social Development Commission (SDC); and St. Catherine Parish Council, among other stakeholders.

Speaking with JIS News, Rev. McKenzie said it was “a privilege and pleasure” to participate in the project.  He said the Secretariat was also “pleased” with the turnout of volunteers.

Rev. McKenzie said while there were several other needy areas across the parish, “this is moreso needy, because so very often, we tend to neglect those who are a little more challenged than we are; and we wanted the community to participate in (this) project.”

Rev. McKenzie said he was also heartened by the number of young people who participate.

“We want to let the youngsters know that we appreciate their effort in coming; and we want to encourage (those who will benefit from the centre’s services) to take care of the facilities and apply themselves to the disciplines that the teachers (will impart) to them,” he added.

Acting Managing Director for CBRJ, Sandrea Long-White, in welcoming the renovation, told JIS News that the building, which was constructed over 40 years ago, “was in dire need of repair.”

“At this centre we have our administrative offices, medical clinics, and psyche-educational clinics. We conduct parent training here, and we also have our adolescent programmes based here. So, we thought we would ask for help, and we have gotten the help that we need,” she said.

Meanwhile, the Mayor said the various project inputs totalled over $100,000. He told JIS News that he was also heartened by the support and turnout of persons, particularly residents of communities adjoining the institution.

“I think it’s a wonderful venture, and I really salute the persons who (came) out to give their support. I hope that it will translate into (greater) things to ensure that they protect their children,” Councillor Scott added.

Programme Coordinator at the centre, Dorothy Ramsay-Daniels, while welcoming Monday’s activity, appealed for even greater stakeholder support, to ensure that the institution’s operations are sustained.

The CBRJ administers programmes for nearly 500 children and adolescents at the four centres the agency currently operates islandwide.

These are located in Manchester, St. Elizabeth and St, James, in addition to St. Catherine, which is also the head office.

Programmes and services provided include: screening and assessment clinics; home-based rehabilitation; centre-based early intervention and therapeutic programmes; and adolescent/adult programmes.