Their Excellencies, Governor-General, the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen and Lady Allen, continued their islandwide tour on Wednesday (May 16), with a visit to the parish of Westmoreland.
The tour, which was led by Custos Owen Sinclair, started in Petersfield in the central section of the parish, where the Governor-General was given insight into the operations of the Association of Clubs, which comprises seven groups collaborating in the training of community members of all ages.
Following a tour of the training facilities, Sir Patrick lauded the resources being provided for the development of the young people in the area.
The next stop was at the Savanna-la-mar Primary School, where the Governor- General inspected a guard of honour formed by the scouts and brownies, before enjoying performances of gold winning pieces from the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission’s (JCDC) festival of the arts.
In his address to the students and staff, the Governor-General called for commitment from all stakeholders within the education system to rid schools of violence.
“Each school must be a violence-free zone. We should not have violence in our schools, everyone must passionately commit to this effort. Parents, students, teachers, school boards, security forces, church, social workers, community leaders and the nation as a whole, should commit themselves to the fact that we must not have violence in our schools,” he stated.
He said that a school is intended to be a place for learning to read and write, reason, think, analyse, make deductions and come to educated conclusions.
The next stop on the tour was Beeston Spring in the eastern section of the parish to observe various community projects.
Sir Patrick used the occasion to encourage the residents to support and strengthen their community organisations and institutions. He said now is the time to pool knowledge and resources, and utilise skills to achieve the common objective to make ‘Jamaica the place of choice to live, work, raise families and do business’.
He insisted that there is nothing wrong with Jamaica that cannot be fixed by what is right with Jamaica.
The Governor-General’s parish tours are in celebration of Jamaica’s 50th year of Independence and are intended to rekindle a sense of pride, confidence and hope in Jamaicans as the country marks this important milestone.
The visits are also to celebrate with the various community groups, their achievements and accomplishments over the years.
By Bryan Miller, JIS Reporter