JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Residents of Salt Spring in St. James benefitted from a health and job fair, which was staged in the community on Monday (August 19) by the Social Development Commission (SDC).
  • The event was organised in partnership with the Ministry of Health & Wellness, Salt Spring Community Outreach Programme for Empowerment (SCOPE), and Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).
  • The fair, which also involved the support of several other public and private sector entities, saw adults and children receiving free check-ups and consultations from doctors and nurses on hand.

Residents of Salt Spring in St. James benefitted from a health and job fair, which was staged in the community on Monday (August 19) by the Social Development Commission (SDC).

The event was organised in partnership with the Ministry of Health & Wellness, Salt Spring Community Outreach Programme for Empowerment (SCOPE), and Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).

The fair, which also involved the support of several other public and private sector entities, saw adults and children receiving free check-ups and consultations from doctors and nurses on hand.

Additionally, several jobseekers were recruited by a number of the participating entities, a move that was lauded by the fair’s organisers.

SDC Community Development Officer, Jayron Sterling, noted that the event “has long been in the making,”

“We have been targeting the Salt Spring community for an event of this nature, and went about seeking partners to ensure a meaningful collaboration,” he told JIS News, pointing out that “everything [went] well as we hoped.”

Mr. Sterling added that “what was fulfilling was to see the many youngsters [attending] who could have been somewhere else. We combined the health fair with a job fair so as to give the people of Salt Spring the best of both worlds”.

He said there are plans to stage similar events in other inner-city communities.

Meanwhile, Parish Health and Promotion and Education Officer at the Ministry of Health & Wellness, Julian Grandison-Mullings, said the Ministry’s involvement was in keeping with its focus on sensitising communities to the dangers of non-communicable diseases (NCD).

“As part of our ‘Jamaica Moves’ initiative, the Ministry continues to push healthy eating and physical activity as the primary tools in the fight against these diseases, which include cardiovascular diseases, heart attack, stroke, cancer, and diabetes,” she noted.

Additionally, Ms. Grandison-Mullings said the Ministry is trying to get the nation’s youth to understand that “physical activity plays a highly significant role in achieving and maintaining a healthy lifestyle”.

She further noted that dengue fever remains a threat and urges persons to continue employing preventative measures to avoid an outbreak.

“We can’t afford to be complacent where this is concerned. The breeding aspect of the mosquitoes is what we are very concerned about, and so we are trying to get people to ensure they are not doing things to facilitate this,” Ms. Grandison-Mullings emphasised.

For her part, Woman Inspector Yvonne White-Powell said the JCF is proud to be a partner in activities that benefit inner-city communities like Salt Spring.

She said she was particularly pleased with the turnout of and extent of interaction among residents of a community that was once regarded as “prone to violence”.

“Social intervention programmes do work in these communities. We, as members of the JCF, do relish our role in being a part of events that bring the best out of all of us,” Inspector White-Powell said.