The St. Elizabeth Homecoming Foundation (SEHF) will be constructing a multi-skills youth training centre in Santa Cruz, and the government has committed to lease the organization some 16 hectares (40 acres) of land for the project. Member of Parliament for North Eastern St. Elizabeth and Agriculture Minister, Roger Clarke and executive members of the SEHF recently toured the site, which forms part of lands at the historic Gilnock polo club.
According to the Minister, the SEHF had demonstrated over the past 12 years “that it is serious about the orderly development of the parish. What should be noted is that once I carried the proposal for this project to the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the approval for a long-term lease was an almost foregone conclusion given the marvellous track record of your organization.” Minister Clarke stated that, “many generations stood to benefit in a profound way”, once the project was fully implemented. “I know that many of the youth from the various communities near this place are for such an endeavour, which will surely once again show to the nation that as St. Elizabethans, we believe in the bright future of our country,” he said.
For her part, Chief Executive Officer of SEHF, Joan Lobban promised to do all in her power to get the skills centre up and running in the shortest possible time. “At this point, we will be embarking on a number of major undertakings to secure the necessary funds that will result in the realisation of our dream,” she said. Mrs. Lobban called on all other civic-minded individuals and groups from across Jamaica, as well as internationally, to partner with the SEHF to implement the project. “When you see us approach you please do not hesitate to do something. It does not have to be by way of a cash donation as we also will be needing persons who are willing to volunteer their time,” she pointed out.