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The Kingston and St. Andrew Corporation(KSAC) will be hosting a Child Month Service at its monument to Jamaica’s slain children, The Secret Gardens, at the intersection of Church and Tower streets, in downtown Kingston on Sunday, May third.
The ceremony is being held at the start of Child Month(May), and only five months after the erection of the monument, in fulfillment of a commitment of the KSAC to hold a ceremony there at the beginning of the month which is set aside to honour the nation’s children, each year.
Highlights of the event will include the addition of 37 new names to the over 450 children, victims of crime and violence over the past 5 years, whose names have already been listed on the monument.
The Governor General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Dr. Patrick Allen, will lay the first floral tribute.
Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, the Hon. Olivia “Babsy” Grange, who will represent the Prime Minister, the Hon. Bruce Golding, Leader of the Opposition, Mrs. Portia Simpson Miller; and Vauxhall High School student, Shanoya Anderson, will read the lessons.
The Rev. Karl Johnson, President of the Jamaica Council of Churches, will deliver the sermon, while the Mayor of Kingston, Senator Desmond McKenzie, will welcome the guests.
Members of the diplomatic corps and the Cabinet, the Chief of Staff of the Jamaica Defence Force(JDF) and the Commissioner of Police, are among persons invited to participate in the function.
The Secret Gardens was constructed in 2008 and opened to the public on November 20. It was a project of the KSAC, with support from Corporate Jamaica. Designed by sculptor, Paul Napier, it bears the names of approximately 450 of Jamaica’s children who have been the victims of crime and violence and sits in a surrounding park known as the Secret Gardens.
Since being opened to the public, the site has been one of the most popular ones in the downtown Kingston area, attracting thousands of visitors and creating an emotional oasis in the commercial centre of the City focusing on the plight of the children.
The KSAC is committed to hosting a service each year at the site, commemorating children who are victims and in an effort to both highlight their tragic demise, as well in the hope that Jamaicans, especially Kingstonians, will be encouraged to protect their children from all forms of physical, mental and sexual violence.
Mayor McKenzie says he is inviting persons attending the ceremony to take a rose to the site on Sunday in remembrance of the children.

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