The Jamaican Canadian Centre in Toronto came alive on Friday November 12, as hundreds of persons turned out for a concert to raise funds for victims of Tropical Storm Nicole.
Torrential rains associated with the weather system, impacted the island from September 26 to 29, claiming 13 lives, and wreaking havoc on the country’s road infrastructure, farms, and schools, resulting in billions of dollars in damage.
Comedian Letna Allen-Rowe had the audience in stitches at the Tropical Storm Nicole fundraising concert held on November 12 at the Jamaican Canadian Centre in Toronto. The concert was organised by the Jamaican Canadian Association.
Members of the Jamaican Canadian Association (JCA) organised the concert in response to an appeal for assistance from Consul General to Toronto, Seth George Ramocan.
Consul at the Consulate General, Nigel Smith commended the JCA for arranging the event and thanked the audience for their support, noting that the contributions are desperately needed.
He informed that the proceeds will assist the efforts of the Jamaica Red Cross, the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM), and other agencies “that are still in the process of assisting families and communities to get their lives back in order.”
Speaking to JIS News, President of the JCA, Audrey Campbell, said it is critical that Jamaicans in the Diaspora respond to appeals for assistance at home.
Guyanese-born pan player D’jango performs at the Tropical Storm Nicole fundraising concert held on November 12 at the Jamaican Canadian Centre in Toronto.
“The extent of the devastation of Tropical Storm Nicole was not widely publicised by the North American mainstream media, and many Jamaicans and the wider community were not aware of the effects,” she said.
“However, once we received the request from the Government of Jamaica and were faced with the reality that international aid to Jamaica was not an option, it was up to us, the Jamaican Canadian Association and all Jamaican nationals, to come to the aid of our beloved country,” she said.
Ms. Campbell said she hoped the proceeds from the concert will be close to the C$10,000 that the organisation raised for Haiti after the January 2010 earthquake, which devastated that country.
President of the Jamaican Canadian Association (JCA), Audrey Campbell (centre), shares a moment with Jamaican Keith Ellis, who is Professor Emeritus at the University of Toronto (left); and former Councillor in the city of Brampton, Jamaican-born Garnett Manning. Occasion was the Tropical Strom Nicole fundraising concert held on November 12 at the Jamaican Canadian Centre in Toronto. The concert was organised by the JCA at the appeal for assistance from Consul General to Toronto, Seth George Ramocan.
She thanked the many artistes and comedians, who performed free of cost; the restaurants that donated free food and drinks to be sold; and the members of the public, who attended and gave donations.
“We understand these are tough economic times and are extremely grateful for the donations received,” said Ms. Campbell. “We saw the heart of Jamaicans and friends of Jamaica that evening. You can take us out of the country but you can’t take the country out of us. We love that little piece of rock and we don’t want anything to happen to it,” she stated.
The centre not only rocked with the syncopating sounds of reggae, and rhythm and blues, but also from laughter as a number of comedians displayed their talent.