JIS News

Jamaicans in South Florida have undertaken to repair two schools in Jamaica, as they return home to participate in Homecoming Week, to be observed from October 15 to 22.
The first project is to repair the Woodford Basic School in Kingston, that was damaged by Hurricane Ivan in 2004. Funds are also to be provided to pay at least one teacher for one year, from donations at several fund-raising events and contributions from the South Florida Diaspora.
The second project is the Epping Forest Primary School in St. Elizabeth, which also suffered damage from Hurricane Ivan.
Those efforts were outlined by Dahlia Walker-Huntington, Advisory Board member of the Jamaican Diaspora Foundation, at a recent community meeting of the Jamaican Diaspora in North Miami. She encouraged Jamaicans across the Diaspora to join with the proposed projects or to begin or even participate in established projects in their homeland communities.
Members of the Holy Family Episcopal church in North Miami have donated a special collection for the Woodford Basic School, while two Jamaican architects would be lending their expertise to the project.
Reverend Dennis Grant of Restoration Ministries in Fort Lauderdale has also sponsored a classroom at that school.
Hot PC Deals, a computer retail company, has also donated equipment for Epping Forest Primary School.Homecoming activities, now in its second year, is an initiative of Hands Across Jamaica for Righteousness, which was founded by Jamaican author, Yvonne Coke and has been endorsed by Governor General, His Excellency, the Most Hon. Sir Howard Cooke and leading public and private sector entities in Jamaica.
The national event, under the theme ‘Let’s Take Our Country Back’, aims at promoting national pride through the process of rebuilding, restoring and renewing families and communities. In this regard, Jamaicans at home as well as those living overseas are encouraged to do their part through patriotic endeavours – loyalty, service and investment in the nation.
Miss Coke, in welcoming South Florida’s participation, also outlined a core of events during the week.
These include regional rallies, exhibitions and expositions, cultural and sporting events, workshops and church services.
Miss Coke said the activities were aimed at reclaiming Jamaica from the negative forces of crime and violence by helping to restore sound values and attitudes.
Consul General in Miami, Ricardo Allicock, also encouraged Jamaicans to become involved in the activities.
Those wishing to take part in Homecoming Week can visit the website at: www.jamaicahomecoming.net.