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JIS News

The St. James Parish Council will host some 500 young persons between 13 and 16 years of age at its Summer Youth Sport Camp, and an additional 60 children from 7 to 12 years at its Summer Kids Camp, scheduled to be held simultaneously from July 24 to August 4 in Montego Bay.
The sport camp, to be staged under the theme: ‘Using sports as a tool for development and peace’, is designed to provide a developmentally focused youth summer sport camp that incorporates sports with a strong commitment to youth development, and also to provide a safe and healthy alternative to risky behaviour during the Summer holidays.
For the kids camp, the focus is on creating an environment of fun and education; and a learning environment that promotes a relaxing alternative to the traditional, monotonous methodology involved in imparting knowledge.
Areas of emphasis will include art, craft, drama, sports and civics, which will be facilitated by community resource persons as well as members of staff of the Parish Council and the Junior Council.
Speaking to JIS News at the official launch of the programmes at the Council’s chambers in Montego Bay recently, Mayor of Montego Bay and Chairman of the St. James Parish Council, Noel Donaldson, said that the overall aim of the summer programmes, which would be funded at a cost of $1.3 million, was to ensure that young people were engaged in positive activities, thereby minimizing the possibility of getting involved in negative activities or behaviour.
“The St. James Parish Council is committed to the summer programmes being established for the youths of the parish and will be using funds from property taxes, which are designed to be utilized in community development, to fund these essential programmes,” the Mayor said.
“We as a council have therefore embarked on the programmes as a means of giving back to the community, while at the same time enhancing the development of our youths. We see the need to provide a positive environment, to inculcate qualities of civic pride, of sportsmanship and the teaching of art and craft and to really engage their minds and guiding them in a truly holistic way,” he added.
Chief resource person and Co-ordinator for the camps, Jerry Reid, expressed enthusiasm about the two-week camps.
“I look forward to the summer camps, where the youths will be engaged in a variety of sporting competitions, which will give them a feeling of competitiveness . I believe at the end of the camps, there will be spin-offs to the participants toward what they would want to be in the future,” Mr. Reid told JIS News.