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Story Highlights

  • Primary school students in Montego Bay are to benefit from the Project Yourself Cultural Arts Programme (PYCap), which was launched on Tuesday, May 24.
  • The 10-week project, which commences in June, is being implemented by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) under the theme: ‘Crafting a Future Through the Arts’.
  • The Montego Bay Cultural Centre will accommodate the programme, utilising the Town Hall and the Speaker’s Corner for training and the final show.

Primary school students in Montego Bay are to benefit from the Project Yourself Cultural Arts Programme (PYCap), which was launched on Tuesday, May 24.
The 10-week project, which commences in June, is being implemented by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC) under the theme: ‘Crafting a Future Through the Arts’.
It will comprise training sessions and workshops targeting the visual and performing arts, and aims to unearth and expose the participants’ potential in these areas.

Speaking during the launch at the Montego Bay Cultural Centre, PYCap’s Co-Chairman, Patrick Prendergast, said the project is being undertaken based on the evidence that young people involved in structured cultural programmes “are more likely to develop better character and social skills.”
“The PYCap will, therefore, provide expert and professional support in the learning and practice of skills and techniques in speech, including poetry and public speaking. It will also include drama and improvisation, basic play writing, and acting, dance, including traditional and contemporary forms, and visual arts (including) drawing, painting and mask making,” he outlined.

Mr. Prendergast said key areas of focus that will be emphasised include: the discipline involved in developing creative arts skills and techniques; the positive life building skills that can be derived from outputs of a high standard; and the accompanying social respectability and responsibility.

“The initiative is really aimed at preparing participants with life skills and (to) help them shed established taboos in their respective communities that serve to thwart their growth and development into…well-rounded individuals, contributing to the well- being of their society,” he added.
Mr. Prendergast said a special management committee will have direct responsibility for the PYCap’s implementation.

The group will comprise persons drawn from various sectors across Montego Bay including education, youth and development, cultural arts, entertainment, social entrepreneurship, and tourism.
The Montego Bay Cultural Centre will accommodate the programme, utilising the Town Hall and the Speaker’s Corner for training and the final show.

The project has attracted sponsorship from a number of local and corporate entities.
They include: Sandals International, Island Routes, the Western Mirror, Burger King, Seprod, and the University of the West Indies Western Jamaica Campus.

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