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The Governor-General’s Achievement Awards (GGAA), one of the country’s most prestigious awards programme, observes its 20th Anniversary this year, under the theme: “Recognising Excellence."

This year, the anniversary of the awards programme will be launched with church services in all 14 parishes on Sunday, February 20, 2011. A Proclamation from Governor-General His Excellency the Most Honourable Sir Patrick Allen will be read at each service.

Commenting on the 20th Anniversary celebrations, Sir Patrick Allen said the Awards Programme epitomizes the relentless hope of persons who believe in Jamaica and are putting that commitment into action.

“We are going through a difficult period in the history of our country and it is imperative that each of us gives of our time, talent and treasures for the greater good of the nation,” The Governor-General said. 

National Coordinator for the GGAA Mr. Hugh Morris said that there are many citizens who have made significant contributions to their communities, and this awards programme seeks to identify and commend them for their humanitarianism. He highlighted the case of an awardee from the parish of St. Catherine, who has worked relentlessly to enhance the lives of people in his Spanish Town community. 

“He has donated six dialysis machines to the Spanish Town Hospital, provided funds to construct a building to facilitate the treatment of dialysis patients, as well as to construct a perimeter fence around the hospital,” Mr. Morris said.

The GGAA programme is hosted annually in each county under the patronage of His Excellency The Governor-General.   Since its inception more than 400 persons have been recognised for outstanding achievements, overcoming significant difficulties, and contributing to their communities. 

The annual awards are made to persons over the age of 35 from each parish who, from modest economic and social circumstances, have demonstrated upward mobility and are actively involved in their community.  Young people in the age cohorts 25 to 35 and 18 to 25 from each parish are also nominated and recognised for academic achievement, community service involvement and leadership skills.  Nomination forms to recommend achievers are available from the Custos in each parish or from the GGAA website at http://www.governorgeneralsawardsjamaica.com or http://kingshousejamaica.gov.jm. 

Several corporate sponsors have contributed to the success of the Programme, such as the Gleaner Company, the Jamaica National Building Society, the Victoria Mutual Building Society, FirstCaribbean International Building Society and Scotia Jamaica Building Society.