Jamaica Gleaner / Three rural basic schools have been ‘adopted’ under the Sagicor Foundation Adopt A School Programme for the 2017-2018 academic school year.
The schools were announced by Sagicor Foundation Chairman R. Danny Williams during a festive launch event of the programme last Friday at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel.
The three basic schools selected are A.M.E. Basic School in Clarendon, D’Frank Early Childhood Institution in Manchester, and Haughton Grove Early Childhood Institution in Hanover.
The Adopt A School initiative has had a long and rich history from the days of the then Life of Jamaica to its current form with the Sagicor Foundation.
Since the programme’s inception, Sagicor has positively impacted thousands of children’s lives at numerous schools throughout Jamaica. This year, the programme funding allocation has increased by some 300 per cent to provide an even greater impact at the schools. The primary focus of the project includes physical infrastructural repairs and upgrades, as well as providing some critical essentials to ensure the proper operation and sustainability of the schools.
In his address at the event, Williams announced some of the projects for the respective schools, which included expansion of classrooms, fencing, termite treatments, upgrade to play area, refurbishing of bathrooms and kitchens, building of a sick bay, donation of water tank, white boards and first-aid kits.
Several schools were nominated for the programme by Sagicor team members from across the various business lines and branches throughout Jamaica. For the selection process, each school was visited and assessed based on needs, which saw the three schools being successful.
Trisha Williams-Singh, chair of the Early Childhood Commission (ECC), was on hand to commend Sagicor Foundation for its involvement and commitment to developing early-childhood education.
Williams-Singh also highlighted the importance of public-private partnership, noting that the Government alone cannot do it and that if “we get it right at the early-childhood level, the education process would be much smoother from there on”.
In addition to completing major renovations, the foundation will host other activities throughout the year, including a back-to-school health tour, where the children will receive free health checks along with back-to-school supplies.
Christopher Zacca, president and CEO of Sagicor Group Jamaica, shared his excitement to participate in all the activities the foundation has planned for the schools throughout the year. In his address to the principals, he expressed high hopes for the impact the programme will have on Jamaica’s youngest minds.
“We take supporting education initiatives seriously, and are the only company with an education programme that spans from the basic school to tertiary level,” he said.
“Certainly, in the future, we are looking forward to seeing the little ones in our Sagicor Scholarship programme.”
Assyndia Facey-Wright, principal of A.M.E. Basic, was filled with gratitude when she took to the stage on behalf of the three newly adopted schools to thank the foundation for its commitments.
“The projects that are to be undertaken will add so much value to our school environment, the place where we foster and develop the growth of our children – the future leaders of our country. The impact of this programme will be far-reaching, benefiting hundreds of children, not just our children here today, but future children who will enrol at our institutions,” she said.
The Sagicor Foundation will also work with the ECC and the principals to help the schools attain and/or maintain their ECC certification.