JIS News

Civic leaders in Central Jamaica have challenged persons to be steadfast and remain focussed on overcoming challenges that might come their way, and to assist with the development of the country.
“We need to come together as a people to assist in keeping our country together. We need to expand our productive drive for exports. And as a business community, we need to be more efficient in our energy use, and improve the quality of our workforce, so that they can be more efficient in the execution of their duties,” President of the Clarendon Chamber of Commerce, Alda Brown, told JIS News.
He said that there are two proposed projects in the parish that should bring much economic spin-offs and benefit to the country – the development of the Vernamfield Cargo Aerodrome, which is slated to begin this month; and the $100 million extension of the toll road from Vineyards to Vernamfield. He noted that the Vernamfield project should employ some 5,000 workers over a five-year period.
“It will have a positive impact on the entire country. With the airport we will see improved infrastructure in the communities adjoining Vernamfield,” he said.
For his part, Vice President of the St. Elizabeth Homecoming Foundation, Fitzgerald Rowe, suggested that persons should use the co-operative business model to help in overcoming production challenges. He pointed out that the system is largely responsible for the success of the credit unions, and that it has transformed farming areas in St. Elizabeth and Manchester, moving people from subsistence farming to commercial agricultural production.
“In the parish, we have the Business Point at the credit union, where we offer marketing and technical information. For trade contacts, equipment and productivity tools and training for micro and small enterprise operators, whether you are a member of the credit union or not, you can get the service. Also, in the parish, there are opportunities for transformation to more acceptable standards of productivity, especially in agriculture and manufacturing. And we have opportunities for tourism development. In going forward, we must work on our standard of behaviour, in terms of how we treat our brothers and sisters,” Mr. Rowe said.
Meanwhile, reigning Miss Manchester Festival Queen, Miss Lanisia Rhoden, said that young people should set clear goals and seek ways to ensure their success. She said a civic organisation is one area that offers nurturing and guidance for persons.
“What we can do as young people is prioritise where goals are concerned, in order to ensure that the most important things are done successfully. For those in school, they need to take advantage of the many scholarships, grants, and bursaries that exist. They also need to get involved in youth organisations that are making positive contributions to the development of our country. These organisations provide leadership training opportunities for young people, and help to improve persons’ communication and interpersonal skills, and opportunities for networking. Despite the challenges that may face our country, and also personal challenges, just know that whatever we set in our minds, we can achieve it,” she said.

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