Minister with responsibility for Sport, Hon. Natalie Neita Headley, has hailed the establishment of the St. Elizabeth-based BREDS Treasure Beach Sports Park and Academy, noting that it will help harness sporting talent and impart positive values to young people.
“Jamaicans are blessed with boundless sporting talent and I am heartened to see that a facility such as this is being used to harness such talent in a way that it can lead not only to personal development, but also make a positive contribution in the community,” she stated.
The Minister was delivering the main address at Sunday’s (June 30) official opening of a football field at the park that was developed by Gatorade.
The sports facility, which is being developed in phases, is part of attempts by BREDS to develop sporting talent and promote sports tourism in the parish.
The project started two years and already boasts a cricket pitch, tennis court, spectator stands, multi-purpose court, changing rooms and restrooms, children’s play area, bar, picnic area, and outdoor grill. BREDS is working with its various sponsors to establish a resource centre, batting cages, among other amenities, before the project ends in 2015.
“Today’s opening of this newest match field is a clear attempt to develop a facility with the supporting infrastructure that will allow for the hosting of international events, as Jamaica seeks to boost its sport tourism,” Mrs. Neita Headley said.
She lauded BREDS for working with the Canadian Urban Institute to develop a Sports Tourism Strategy for the parish, which has, among its aims, the introduction of a Jamaica Soccer Cup.
Mrs. Neita Headley said that the Government stands ready to help. “You have my assurance of full support, and the Government will do its part in ensuring its success as we are serious about growing the opportunities, which can flow from a vibrant sport tourism sector,” she stated.
The Sport Minister also hailed the various partners and sponsors for their role “in giving rural youth the opportunity to develop their talent, and also helping a community to put together its offerings to attract persons from other countries, and benefit the Jamaican people”.
Contact: Garfield L. Angus