JIS News

The Olympic Homecoming Celebration Fund, a partnership between the Government and the private sector, to help underwrite the cost of a week-long celebration to welcome home Jamaica’s Olympic Team, was launched this morning at Jamaica House.
The Fund has been established through the National Commercial Bank (NCB) and will be co-ordinated by the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ), working in association with the Ministry of Sports.
Pledges in cash and kind were committed at the launch this morning, most of which will be used to finance the seven day celebratory programme, scheduled to run from October 3-9. Another portion of the Fund has been earmarked for the launch of a national media campaign, designed to capitalise on the extraordinary achievements of our Olympic heroes and to use the positive lessons for a national transformation programme.
Speaking at the launch, Prime Minister, Bruce Golding, said the Beijing experience provided a remarkable opportunity for Jamaica to become the sporting Mecca of the world. He said Government wanted to embark on a long term programme of sports development, to provide better facilities and improved infrastructure for our athletes. Mr. Golding said both Government and the private sector, had to move quickly and with purpose to capitalise on the Beijing experience.
Minister of Sports, Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange, outlined details of the 7-day programme and called on media managers to play their part in ensuring that the activities are taken to every single Jamaican at home and in the Diaspora. She noted that there were tremendous opportunities awaiting the private sector, as spin-offs for Jamaica as a leading brand internationally and that already, the rest of the world had started to capitalise on these benefits.
Minister of State for Project Implementation and Service Delivery, Daryl Vaz, who is chairing the fundraising committee along with co-chairman, NCB’s Group Managing Director, Patrick Hylton, called on the private sector members to give their full support to the campaign. Mr. Vaz noted that already several private sector entities had come forward with pledges to provide motor vehicles for the Olympians and housing developers had offered substantial discounts for housing for the athletes.
Companies which have already made their pledges include NCB Foundation, Digicel, Geon Construction, Alpart, Toyota Jamaica, Stewarts Auto, Caribbean Broilers, Gore Developers, Guardian Life, and New Era Homes.