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The Women’s Centre of Jamaica Foundation, was today (Aug. 21) presented with a cheque of US$36,000, from the Jamaica Volunteers Association Incorporation of Washington, for the construction of a kitchen and dining facility at the Centre.
The facility, which is to be completed during 2009, will be able to seat 90 individuals and will be used for dining, a classroom for the teaching of culinary arts, as well as for the hosting of functions.
At the presentation ceremony held at the Centre’s headquarters in Kingston, a representative from the Association, Professor Donald Morgan, noted that the contribution made was very important, as it would be able to provide an area which can be used for multi-purposes, in which the students of the institution can socialise and learn.
“The Jamaica Volunteers Association, is represented here today, to assist the Women’s Centre of Jamaica Foundation, in the building of a kitchen and a dining facility. This area will also help in the teaching of the culinary arts and sciences,” he said.
He implored Jamaicans, at home and in the Diaspora, to contribute to the various social institutions that are in the country which need additional funding, in an effort to ensure continued growth and development.
“Jamaicans at home and those abroad, ought to do much more to help and to save our social institutions, not just for the (Olympic) games but other socio-economic aspects to build up these institutions, because in the ghettos of Kingston and the rural areas of Jamaica, there are talents, people of different ability are there and they need help,” he pointed out.
Those of us who can help,” he continued “have to do much better in assisting the needy social institutions in Jamaica, so that they can do a much better job than what is being done today. So whatever you can do, if you know of anyone who can help, pass the word along so that assistance can come to the women’s centre here,” he said, adding that, like the Centre, there were various institutions in the island which are doing a tremendous job but needed assistance.
In her remarks, Executive Director of the Women’s Centre of Jamaica Foundation, Beryl Weir, noted that the facility which is currently being used as the dining area is small and as such innovative ways had to be implemented when the girls are to dine. She noted that “this building will be able to seat everyone and teach the culinary arts as well as being used for functions.”
She thanked the Association for its continued assistance throughout the years and implored others to contribute to the society.
The Women’s Centre of Jamaica Foundation, is an agent for innovative change. It has particular responsibility, for promoting a new approach, to the problems associated with teenage pregnancy, especially in the area of interrupted education.
The Centre focus on education, training and developmental counselling, by this means improving levels of employment and productivity among the young and delaying unwanted pregnancies.
Some of the services offered by the centre are: ‘walk-in’ counselling service for women and men; counselling for fathers and parents of teen mothers; skilled training for both males and females in the age group of 17 to 25; confidential counselling service for children of any age and group peer counselling sessions at the Kingston Counselling Clinic; and day care facilities for babies of teen and working mothers, among others. To date, over 35,000 teen mothers have been assisted by the Centre.