JIS News

The Jamaica Conservation and Development Trust (JCDT) will celebrate its 20th anniversary this year with a series of activities to be held over the next 11 months to mark the occasion.
Speaking at a press conference on (Jan. 16) at the Jamaica Pegasus hotel in Kingston, JCDT Chairman, Robert Stephens said the celebration will also serve to observe a number of important milestones.
“We have the 20th anniversary of the formation of the Jamaica Conservation and Development Trust, we also have the 15th anniversary of the taking over of the co-management of the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park (in collaboration) with the Forestry Department as well as the National Environment and Planning Agency,” he said.
The Trust will also mark the sixth anniversary of the staging of Misty Bliss, a family-oriented event held at Holywell, which showcases the natural environment and features traditional music, dance and food as well as art and craft displays. This year’s event, which takes place on February 24, will kick off the JCDT’s 11-month celebration, which will run until December.
In addition, the Blue Mountains National Park walk and run series will take place during the months of March, June, September, and December. “The concept is one of health, fitness, environmental education, recreation, as well as spirituality. The participants will be individuals, teams, and families, and we are looking at corporations, churches, schools, (and) community groups participating,” Mr. Stephens outlined.
April will see the staging of the Blue Mountains coffee and arts festival, which the former Tourism Director explained, is aimed at exposing Jamaica’s art and culture. “The concept is to capture the beauty of the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park in art. painting (and) photography, and will also feature poetry reading,” Mr. Stephens said.
Other activities include: a 20th anniversary church service and awards banquet in May; youth summer camps in July and August, and an international art exhibition and auction, and gospel concert in November.
Minister of Information, Culture, Youth, and Sports, Olivia Grange, who was the guest speaker at the launch, congratulated the JCDT on the milestone, and its work in preserving Jamaica’s natural and cultural heritage. She noted that Jamaica “represents a point of reference internationally (and is) known as a country whose cultural heritage is unique.”

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