KINGSTON — The Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ) has reported substantial progress in preparing for the implementation of the Community Renewal Programme (CRP) this year.
The CRP resulted from Prime Minister Bruce Golding’s mandate to the PIOJ to prepare a programme for long term stability and well-being, inclusive of violent and vulnerable communities and consistent with the goals of Vision 2030, following the security operations in West Kingston in 2010.
The programme will address poor housing and infrastructure, weak community governance and lack of coordination of social intervention programmes.
Speaking at the Institute’s quarterly press briefing on Friday (May 20), Director General, Dr. Gladstone Hutchinson, said that the Secretariat is now functional, and selection of the 100 most volatile and vulnerable communities targeted for intervention over the 10-year life of the project has been completed. The communities will be selected from five parishes – Kingston and St. Andrew, St. James, Clarendon and St. Catherine.
Dr. Hutchinson said the PIOJ has identified funding for the life of the project, as well as an allocation of some $3.9 billion in this year’s budget for projects. He noted that the initiative is far-reaching and fundamental, and has widespread agreement in the public and private sectors.
“We believe that the successful implementation of this and other (programmes) is critical to ensuring that economic recovery is consolidated, and ultimately leads to Jamaica achieving its Vision 2030 goals,” he stated.
It is expected to transform the social and physical structure of the communities, as well as their socio-economic conditions. The country should have cleaner and more habitable environments, better sanitation and public and individual infrastructure, in addition to significant advances for unattached youths as a result. It also aims to empower citizens, while achieving a reduction in crime and violence, and strengthen the economic landscape of targeted communities.
By ATHALIAH REYNOLDS, JIS Reporter