The Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) is fully committed to improving the living conditions of the people in Norwood, St. James, which has been earmarked for several major development projects in 2023.
Managing Director, JSIF, Omar Sweeney, indicated that education, water and community facilities will be among the areas of focus in Norwood, which is currently a Zone of Special Operations (ZOSO).
He was speaking to JIS News during a Christmas Tree-lighting ceremony in the community, on Thursday, December 22.
“What needs to be upgraded is the water supply system, so we are in our design development for that. We have [plans] for a large sport complex that will be built here, [and] that has come out of our assessment and outreach with the community,” Mr. Sweeney outlined.
“There is an infant school on the books to be built here in the community, for it is a large community. Also, there is a site for a big STEM academy on the outskirts of the community [because] this community has a high youth population and many of them are travelling long distances to get to school,” he added.
Mr. Sweeney said it will require the partnership of all community stakeholders, to include the residents, Ministry of Education and Youth, Member of Parliament, the Community Development Committee (CDC), Councillor and more, to see these plans to fruition.
The ceremony was the first of its kind in the community, with residents, including children, in attendance. They took part in several activities, such as dance, music, Christmas carols, speeches and bounce-a-bout rides. They were provided with refreshments.
For his part, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of National Security, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, lauded the event, noting that it symbolises community safety and unity.
“I am really happy to be here tonight to participate in this tree-lighting ceremony, and I want to make an appeal to you that as we go forward, we will ensure that the activities in Norwood would positively affect the vibrancy, the true health and dynamic nature of the community,” he added.
The Minister said the Government will continue to do what is necessary to protect the citizens in Norwood.