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The Jamaica Consulate in Miami has raised nearly US$3,200 to benefit the Swift Purcell Boys’ Home in St. Mary and children of policemen slain in the line of duty.
The money, which was collected at the annual Independence church service held recently in Fort Lauderdale, will be shared equally between the boys home and the Ministry of National Security, towards scholarships for the children of slain officers. Consul General Ricardo Allicock is expected to visit Jamaica shortly to present the donations to the institutions.
The Consul General expressed appreciation to the hundreds of Jamaican nationals and friends attending the ecumenical service to mark the country’s 43rd anniversary of Independence, which was held at the First Presbyterian Church.
Since 2003, proceeds from the annual event have gone to the Swift Purcell Boys’ Home to benefit nearly 42 boys ranging from ages six to 18 years. Last year’s donation assisted with repairs and the refurbishing of the home, which sustained minor damage during Hurricane Ivan.
Last October, the members of the Jamaica United States Chamber of Commerce in South Florida established a scholarship fund for residents of the orphanage. The first award went to 18-year-old Josiah Wilson, who is currently pursuing an associate degree in natural sciences at the College of Agriculture, Science and Education in Portland.
Earlier this year, two Jamaican students, one attending high school in Hanover and the other a university freshman, were also awarded scholarships by members of the South Florida chapter of the Jamaica Ex-Police Association.
According to Consul General Allicock, the Jamaican Diaspora has been committed to ongoing assistance to their homeland, especially in areas of greatest need. He added that provisions to assist in educating “our young ones, was of great importance”.