The Retrieve All-age School in Westmoreland, has been extensively rehabilitated by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF), at a cost of approximately $6 million.
The scope of work included the overhaul of the school’s roof, painting of the building, provision of new security grills and windows, renovation of the kitchen, and furnishing of all classrooms.
As part of the condition for funding, the community contributed 11 per cent of the total cost of the project through labour, security, storage of material, and cleaning up of the work site.
General Manager for Human Resources and Administration at JSIF, Rhonda Lumsden-Lue, addressing the ceremony to officially hand over the project to the school community recently, lauded the residents of Retrieve for giving priority to the education of their children.
Students of the Retrieve All-age School in Westmoreland provide entertainment at the official handing over of the refurbished school recently. The project was undertaken by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund at a cost of approximately $6 million.
“I would like to celebrate with you the fact that you have invested in the education of the children of your community … this is indeed a splendid occasion and the Jamaica Social Investment Fund is delighted to be sharing in this experience. This indicates that the people of Retrieve believe that education is central to socio-economic development, a view that has always been that of the JSIF,” she stated.
She said that JSIF has “invested heavily in the education sector,” and since its inception in 1996, has constructed, rehabilitated and equipped 348 schools across the island at a total cost of $1.7 billion. She indicated that in Westmoreland alone, 32 school projects costing some $131 million have been completed.
Oliver Green from the Child Development Agency, who was the guest speaker at the ceremony, urged the citizens of Retrieve to care for the school.
“This project’s objective should be to ensure that all citizens are assisted and afforded a better quality of life. The facility, therefore, should be properly cared for and protected and be seen as a monument that speaks to the improvement of the social, economic, physical and spiritual life of its people. It is therefore the business of every citizen of this community to protect the institution as a centre of learning,” Mr. Green stated.