JIS News

Residents of St. Elizabeth today joined forces with Scotia Bank, the Tourist Product Development Company (TPDCo), Holland Sugar Estate, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands, to clean and replant sections of the historic Holland Bamboo Grove.
The project, funded by Scotia Bank, is in keeping with the national Labour Day theme of ‘Honouring our ancestors, strengthening Communities’.
“This has been an ongoing project in which we have been trying to restore the bamboo to its former glory,” said Environmental Officer with TPDCo, Richard Thompson. “What we are doing today is cleaning up a lot of the garbage that is there. We are also doing some replanting in some vacant spots along the property,” he informed.
Mr. Thompson noted that over the years, the historic grove has suffered the effects of fires and hurricanes, and the work being undertaken will help to restore the area to its former glory. “We want for the bamboo to be healthy and have a high productivity rate as right now, it is very low basically because of the amount of stress it has gone through both naturally as well as man-made,” he stated.
Further up the road, a lot of activity was taking place at the Siloah Basic School, which is the parish project.
School Principal, Ann-Marie Chambers, told JIS News that the work to be done will include painting, cleaning up the yard, and repairing the roof. “This Labour Day to us means a lot because we are really in need of the help for a long time. We are very grateful for the help and the attention,” she said.
Past student Chris Thompson, who came out to participate in the day’s activities, said he was elated to make a contribution to his alma mater. “I use to attend and I respect the principal so I decided to come out and lend a helping hand, knowing that what I do will have a significant effect especially on the young ones, who are students here,” he said.
Mr. Thompson informed that he will be painting and doing some art work as well as cutting grass and “doing some electrical work so we can have some music later on.”
Over in the parish of Manchester, the parish council undertook the cleaning of the Mandeville Cemetery as the parish project, while work continued on the construction of a computer laboratory and library at the Harry Watch All-age school.
Principal of the institution, Vinette Robinson, had high praises for the 30 volunteers, who come out early to work on the project. “I also wish to thank Jamalco for the contribution of over $100,000 that was given to help with the work today; it has made a significant difference,” she said.
The bauxite company has contributed nearly $500,000 to nine projects in the parishes of Manchester and Clarendon. These include construction of a guard house at Vere Technical High School; repairing of the Milk River Basic School canteen; reroofing of the storage area at the Havannah Heights community centre; painting of the Mocho Basic School; ongoing construction works at the Toll Gate community centre; as well as the painting of a pedestrian crossing in Porus. The company also gave $20,000 towards the Clarendon parish project, which is the cleaning of the Denbigh cemetery.

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