JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Budding chefs and household cooks in the inner-city communities of Southside and Parade in downtown Kingston will get a chance to showcase and improve their talent.
  • GASPRO will partner with the PIOJ to stage the first ‘GASPRO Street Style Cook-up’ at Tower Street in Parade Gardens.
  • The initiative, which is part of the PIOJ’s Community Renewal Programme (CRP), aims to engage and empower members of the community.

Budding chefs and household cooks in the inner-city communities of Southside and Tel-Aviv in downtown Kingston will get a chance to showcase and improve their talent on Saturday, May 17, as Gas Products Limited (GASPRO) partner with the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ) to stage the first ‘GASPRO Street Style Cook-up’ at Tower Street in Parade Gardens, Kingston.

The initiative, which is part of the PIOJ’s Community Renewal Programme (CRP), aims to engage and empower members of the community in a public/private sector approach.

Speaking at a JIS Think Tank session on Tuesday April 22, Implementing Manager for the CRP/GASPRO project, Carrington Morgan said the event will be entirely focused on empowerment, building a relationship with the community and integrating the residents with members of the public and private sector.

“We want to connect with the community in smaller ways, we want to be able to go to where they cook on a regular Friday or Saturday night and be a part of their own setting,” Mr. Morgan added.

He said that the cook-up activity is the first in a series to be rolled out over a four-year period and will include several inner-city communities island wide.

For the competition on May 17, participants will be guided by a coach and provided with products from the sponsors to prepare a complete meal.

In addition to empowerment and employment prospects, the winner of the cook-up will receive several gifts including a six-burner stove from Singer and other appliances.

Prior to the ‘Street style cook-up’, participants and members of the inner-city communities will benefit from workshops featuring topics such as: how to invest, growing your business, preparing nutritious meals and cooking in sanitary and safe conditions.

Technical Specialist for Socio-economic Development Community Renewal Programme at the PIOJ, Charmaine Brimm, said this CRP/GASPRO project “fits perfectly with the CRP’s socioeconomic development component which looks primarily at improving the quality of life of community members.”

“Unemployment is the main issue for residents in these communities and any project for these communities must incorporate empowerment, improving employment, employability and entrepreneurship,” Ms. Brimm highlighted.

The project will also allow the CRP to gather data to channel resources, address needs and provide the necessary intervention programmes for the community.

Meanwhile, Sales Manager for GASPRO, Nicola Dawson, highlighted that the project will help to meet its main objective of creating value and transforming lives.

“When these communities are alive, when they can provide for their children and the elderly, then all of this will work together for the growth and for the good of the country” Ms. Dawson said.

Several private sector companies have joined in to help the PIOJ and GASPRO with this project including GraceKennedy, Pepsi, Azan Supercentre, JN Small Business Loans and Singer.