Project for the Advancement of Childhood Education (PACE) Canada has adopted 28 basic schools in the last seven months, bringing the total number of basic schools adopted in Jamaica to 285.
President of the organisation, Dr. Mary Anne Chambers, cited the figure at the group’s recent annual Christmas Toy and Book Drive, held at the Jamaican Consulate General in Toronto, Canada.
“There are at least three or four more adoptions in the works. Some people actually give them as Christmas gifts to members of their family and some of those are in progress right now,” she said.
President of PACE Canada, Dr. Mary Anne Chambers (right), gets some assistance from four kindergarten students from Galloway Road Public School, as she presents a gift to founder of the organization, Dr. Mavis Burke, at the group’s annual Christmas Toy and Book Drive, held recently at the Jamaican Consulate General in Toronto, Canada.
The President thanked those present for their support of the organisation over the past year.
“In whatever way you have helped to support the children of Jamaica and the children here in Toronto, I say thank you. The children in the two childcare centres here that PACE adopts have a very similar socio-economic life to the ones that we support in Jamaica. We are happy to have found them and happy to be supporting them,” she said.
Since its inception more than 23 years ago, PACE Canada has impacted the lives of approximately 50,000 children in Jamaica through its adoption of basic schools. The group has also adopted two childcare centres in Toronto.
Consul at the Jamaican Consulate, Nigel Smith, said the Consulate was pleased to be a part of the fundraising efforts of PACE Canada and encouraged everyone to continue to show strong support to the group.
“PACE has brought us together today so that we can, even in a small way, bring a smile to a child’s face this Christmas. The gifts of toys and books will nurture their minds, bring joy to their hearts and widen their smiles of innocence,” said Mr. Smith.
In order to reduce shipping costs, the organisation encourages monetary donations for its toy and book drive. The funds are then used to purchase educational supplies and books from Sangsters Book Store in Jamaica and delivered to the PACE adopted schools around the island.