The 59 wards of the state housed at the Blossom Gardens Child Care facility in Montego Bay and their caregivers are to benefit from major improvements to their surroundings, with the addition of a Play and Learning Centre.
The new Centre was constructed through a collaborative effort between the Kiwanis Club of Montego Freeport, Montego Bay, and the Child Development Agency (CDA), at a cost of approximately $1.9 million.
Addressing the official opening ceremony for the Centre on Thursday (April 22), outgoing Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the CDA, Alison Anderson-Mclean, in commending the move to construct the facility, noted that play is an integral part of the child development process. She said that, without play, children could not develop into wholesome productive adults.
Pointing out that things and time are ever changing with offerings of less wide open spaces for children to play, she called for adults to adapt, by relating their experiences to the 21st century, adding that the Play and Learn Centre will allow for that to be done.
The newly constructed Play and Learning Centre at the Blossom Gardens Child Care Facility in Montego Bay was constructed at a cost of approximately $1 .9 million, through a collaborative effort between the Kiwanis Club of Montego Freeport in Montego Bay, and the Child Development Agency (CDA). It was officially opened on Thursday(April 22).
“It (the centre) is an excellent idea, because what it will do is enable us to have a repository where these experiences can be replicated, even if it is not a wide open space. I know that this play centre will be a space where our children in this centre will develop cognitive, social, emotional and of course intellectual skills”, she stated.
“This is where they will learn to solve problems, this is where they will develop empathy, and this is where they will develop social competence,” she emphasised.
She also encouraged the staff and volunteers at the facility to always remember that they are duty bearers, charged with the responsibility of protecting and promoting the rights of every child with whom they come into contact in the Centre.
Custos of St. James, Hon. Ewen Corrodus, in bringing greetings, expressed the view that despite great advancement in the world in technology, trade, commerce and medical science, man has still not been able to eliminate human need and suffering.
Against this background he commended the Kiwanis Club of Montego Freeport and the CDA for the work they have done at the Facility, categorising them as organisations concerned about that human situation, and wanting to make a difference.