JIS News

The 5th annual Trench Town festival, to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the birth of late reggae icon, Robert Nesta Marley, will be held on Saturday, February 5 at the Vin Lawrence Park in the South St. Andrew community.
The event is being organized by the Trench Town Mediators’ Association (TTMA) in collaboration with the Trench Town Development Association (TTDA), the Dispute Resolution Foundation (DRF) and the Social Development Commission (SDC).
Courtney Kirkland, assistant chairperson for the festival organizing committee and mediator with TTMA, told JIS News that the main objective of the event would be to foster and maintain peace in Trench Town and surrounding communities.
In addition, residents are poised to benefit from the exposure as well as monetary gains from the sale of their skillfully created art and craft items, which will be on display during the event.
Mr. Kirkland informed that proceeds from the event would go towards community development, education and sustenance of a Peace and Justice Centre to be launched in the community later this year.
The centre will facilitate those residents who need to rectify their differences through the means of dispute resolution. “I want patrons to come with an open mind and see what Trench Town has to offer for Jamaicans on a whole. There is a lot to offer out of Trench Town, not just the music but also the skills, education, talent, the craft, all these beautiful things,” he pointed out.
He further urged other communities in Kingston to emulate the positive examples of Trench Town, which he said, would lead to the development of the city and enhance the tourism product.
The festival will begin with a 5-kilometre road race, which will see the participants covering such communities as Trench Town, Arnett Gardens, Rema, Federal, Greenwich, Lyndhurst, Rose Town and Avon Park and ending on Collie Smith Drive.
In addition, there will be performances from the Trench Town marching band and the Tivoli Gardens and Trench Town High schools dance group.
The festival will continue in the night with a gospel concert followed by positive, cultural performances by secular artistes.
The Bob Marley Foundation supports the festival and other development activities in Trench Town, having established a computer learning centre in the community and are funding the renovation of a sports complex as well as the Vin Lawrence Park.
Mr. Kirkland said the organizers would be looking forward to the 2007 World Cup Cricket and they hope that by then, the festival would be fully developed to accommodate visitors from abroad.

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