Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, has lauded American Friends of Jamaica (AFJ) for its philanthropic actions.
“The programmes and contributions of the AFJ continue to impact our beloved island, Jamaica, but particularly the people, in very specific and impressive ways,’ the Prime Minister said.
In his message, read at the AFJ’s 2018 Hummingbird Gala on October 26 at the Plaza Hotel in New York, Mr. Holness said several students have benefited from improved programmes and assistance from schools with which the AFJ has partnered.
“Students with the potential for greatness have had their education financed, and institutions have had their facilities improved. These would not have been possible without the contributions from the AFJ. Among the beneficiaries are scholarship recipients from the University of the West Indies (UWI), the Alpha Institute and the Bull Savannah Primary School,” the Prime Minister said.
Mr. Holness added that the AFJ’s contribution to Jamaica’s health sector is worthy of commendation, noting that Jamaica has benefited from donations in cash and kind and that medical institutions such as the St. Ann’s Bay and Cornwall Regional Hospitals are just two such to benefit from the AFJ’s benevolence.
The Prime Minister pointed out that the contribution to the Cornwall Regional Hospital is especially significant, as it is one of the country’s premier teaching institutions located in the main tourism area of the country.
Meanwhile, Mr. Holness emphasised that the country is now on the path to building a strong economy where everyone can live, work, raise families and do business.
He said that the AFJ’s contributions to the economic well-being of persons in many of the communities in which they have worked complement the Government’s overall drive to make Jamaica a prosperous country.
In her address, Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency Audrey Marks, said that over the 36 years of its existence, the AFJ has distinguished itself as an outstanding organisation that has devoted its philanthropic efforts to the poor and needy in Jamaica.
“I am pleased to note that you were able to distribute grants totalling US$600,000 to projects in Jamaica, more than 100 per cent over the previous year. This is a remarkable feat and I commend you for remaining true to your vision of a world in which all Jamaicans have access to basic education, healthcare services and economic development opportunities for a better quality of life,” she said.
For her part, President of the AFJ, Wendy Hart, said the organisation contributed to 63 projects in Jamaica last year. She said this year, the organisation will focus on three projects – Success By Six, Alpha Institute, and Education – with more than US$156,000 received in pledges going towards these projects.
The 2018 AFJ Hummingbird Award was presented to Founder and CEO of the New York-based VP Records, Patricia Chin; and President and CEO of A.J. Dwoskin & Associates, Albert J. Dwoskin.