JIS News

Executive Director of the Jamaica 4-H Clubs, Lenworth Fulton, is recommending that the entry age of participants into the 4-H Movement be lowered from the current stipulation of nine, to five years old.
Speaking at the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Jamaica 4-H Clubs and the Child Development Agency (CDA) on September 8, Mr. Fulton said that the lowering of the age would allow more children to be involved in the 4-H Clubs from an earlier age, which would only serve to enhance their development.
“We here at the Jamaica 4-H Clubs have taken a move in proposing that we lower the entry age for 4-H clubbites; the age is now nine and we want to lower it to five in order that we may facilitate more children into the programmes,” Mr. Fulton said.
The signing took place at the head office of the CDA, which is located at the Ministry of Health in downtown, Kingston.
The signing of the MOU, he noted, served to formalize the partnership which existed between the 4-H Clubs and the CDA by providing the framework within which both organizations could collaborate. This would allow for further strengthening of their institutional capacities as well as facilitate the expansion of the programmes offered by the 4-H Clubs into more Children’s Homes.
Mr. Fulton pointed out that while the Jamaica 4-H Clubs had been involved in schools primarily, the organization, which has more 67,000 registered clubbites, has expanded its reach into community organizations and more recently into Places of Safety.
The involvement of the 4-H Clubs in Places of Safety, he said, was in keeping with the mandate of the organization to facilitate the training and development of young people.
He added that it was important that special emphasis be placed on children who were in Places of Safety, especially as this related to skills training and leadership development, vital skills that would be useful upon leaving the care of the State.
Speaking with JIS News, Director of Programmes at the CDA, Winston Bowen, said that the MOU was a step in the right direction, as it would facilitate the further development of the 4-H Movement in the Children’s Homes, within which it now operated.
He also said that it would allow for the expansion of the Clubs into more child care facilities across the island, to include the Musgrave, Summerfield, Mannings, Muirton and Glenhope Children’s Homes.
Already, the 4-H Movement has implemented projects at the Granville Place of Safety, which has a chicken and vegetable project; the Homestead Children’s Home, which has a goat and clothing and textiles project, and the St. Augustine Boys’ Home, which has a chicken and egg project.
The Copse Place of Safety and the Mount Olivet Boys’ Home, located in the parishes of Hanover and Manchester respectively, have established vegetable gardens.

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