JIS News

Story Highlights

  • As part of the agency’s continued effort to highlight civic and cultural awareness in the nation’s schools, the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC), on November 25, held a Western Regional Culture Club consultation conference at the St. John’s Methodist Church in Montego Bay.
  • The conference was held under the theme: ‘Jamaican Heritage: Impacting the World’, and students from several schools across the western parishes of Trelawny, Westmoreland, Hanover and St. James were issued Culture Passports, allowing them to access key cultural and heritage sites across Jamaica.
  • Director of the Community Cultural Development Services Division of the JCDC, Marjorie Leyden Vernon, said passport holders can access cultural sites and cultural events for free or at a reduced rate.

As part of the agency’s continued effort to highlight civic and cultural awareness in the nation’s schools, the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC), on November 25, held a Western Regional Culture Club consultation conference at the St. John’s Methodist Church in Montego Bay.

The conference was held under the theme: ‘Jamaican Heritage: Impacting the World’, and students from several schools across the western parishes of Trelawny, Westmoreland, Hanover and St. James were issued Culture Passports, allowing them to access key cultural and heritage sites across Jamaica.

Director of the Community Cultural Development Services Division of the JCDC, Marjorie Leyden Vernon, said passport holders can access cultural sites and cultural events for free or at a reduced rate.

“We have 52 students registered in Culture Clubs in the Western Region. This ceremony in Montego Bay kicks off the series of consultation meetings we will be having across the island, as we try to bring a level of cultural awareness to the students and to ensure they remain in tuned with our country’s rich cultural heritage,” she said.

The official launch of the Culture Passport was held at the Rex Nettleford Multi-Purpose Centre, at the University of the West Indies, in June. It followed a pilot programme, which was introduced in 2013 in three Corporate Area schools with 100 participants.

In 2009, the JCDC established the Culture Clubs programme in schools across the island in an effort to preserve Jamaica’s rich cultural heritage.

“The ideals of the agency’s Culture Clubs programme are to engender a greater sense of patriotism and civic pride; develop respect for Jamaica’s national symbols and emblems; create greater awareness and appreciation for our cultural heritage; and help develop and preserve the arts and what truly makes us Jamaicans,” Ms. Leyden Vernon  noted.

“When we have our cultural consultation meetings, it will be mandatory for students to recite the national anthem and the pledge. Our job is to ensure that they truly appreciate and understand our culture, to the point where they can be cultural ambassadors for the nation,” she added.

Regional Manager of the JCDC, Natalie Morris, said the Ministry of Youth and Culture, under which the JCDC falls, has taken the lead in ensuring that the nation’s youth are culturally aware and are given an opportunity to make a meaningful contribution to the development of Jamaica.

“It is great to be uniquely Jamaican…it is great to be  part of a culture that has dominated the world stage in so many different areas. This is the message we want to bring to our young people…our students…as we embark on our series of consultations across the island,” she said.

Skip to content