JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Residents of Flagstaff in St. James now have the benefit of a newly renovated community centre, which was refurbished at a cost of $8.5 million.
  • The facility was officially reopened by Local Government and Community Development Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, on Wednesday (October 16).
  • It incorporates several features that will facilitate the implementation of community development programmes and activities. These include: youth clubs, a homework centre and training initiatives.

Residents of Flagstaff in St. James now have the benefit of a newly renovated community centre, which was refurbished at a cost of $8.5 million.

The facility was officially reopened by Local Government and Community Development Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, on Wednesday (October 16).

It incorporates several features that will facilitate the implementation of community development programmes and activities. These include: youth clubs, a homework centre and training initiatives.

In his address at the opening ceremony, Mr. McKenzie said the Social Development Commission (SDC), which falls under his Portfolio, will be directed to implement a “structured programme” at the centre before year end.

He explained that the programme will involve residents of the community “to ensure that this facility is used, and used wisely”.

“I want you to remain committed in your resolve to ensure that community development continues at a pace and that Flagstaff is one of those communities practising what they preach,” the Minister added.

Mr. McKenzie also gave an undertaking to provide funding to rehabilitate the community’s main road.in the community.

For his part, Mayor of Montego Bay and Chairman of the St. James Municipal Corporation, Councillor Homer Davis, noted that the facility is one of several community centres earmarked for refurbishment.

“Over in Mafoota, we have just spent some $1.5 million to refurbish that centre. Over in Bickersteth, we will be spending some $14 million to rehabilitate the centre, and put in a new multipurpose court, with seating capacity for 400 persons, and we looking to put in solar light over there,” he stated.

Mr. Davis indicated that a multipurpose court will also be constructed in Flagstaff in short order.

“We understand that the community must have somewhere to play, to gather; and so we are making these facilities available for the community,” he said.

Resident of Flagstaff, Caldo Scott, lauded the Municipality and the Government for renovating the centre.

He said it was “a special blessing for me to live to see [the renovation of] this community centre at Flagstaff come to a reality”.