Western News

SSYC launches project to raise funds for homework centre

BY ACEION CUNNINGHAM
Observer West writer

Thursday, February 07, 2019

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MONTEGO BAY, St James — The Salt Spring Youth for Change (SSYC) group in a joint effort with councillor for the Salt Spring Division, Sylvan Reid, recently launched the Salt Spring Community Corner League football competition, as part of a fundraising drive to erect a homework centre for children in and around Salt Spring.

The centre is geared towards giving children the opportunity to read different types of books on many career fields, including engineering, accounting and medicine. They will also be encouraged to do free online engineering courses and get involved in becoming coding experts or web developers.

At the helm of the project are Adrian Hill and Moya Morris.

Hill, now a resident of United Kingdom, grew up in the Salt Spring community and has been working with Morris and others to improve the area.

“Sports is not only one of the best ways to raise money for a special cause but to also bring the community together. The money raised from our fundraising events will be used to source a container that can be transformed into a homework centre. I want to use this centre to give young adults and children the opportunity to have access to books on different areas such as law, medicine or software development,” Hill told the Jamaica Observer West.

“Knowledge and integrity are two important things in life, once you have the knowledge and integrity, you can accomplish what you set out to do, but you first need to know what you can be, and that is what we hope to achieve with the centre.”

Children, Hill argued, are able to have a choice once they are exposed to knowledge.

“This will hopefully show them that they can be in any profession they choose. Once they have the opportunity and are exposed to the possibilities, I think it will be harder for them to be influenced or easily manipulated. What we are trying to counteract is the low percentage of children progressing to tertiary education, high percentage of secondary school drop-outs and children getting involved in criminal activity,” he explained.

Morris said there is a strong need for the centre, pointing to the growing number of at-risk youths in the community.

“My drive for the SSYFC stems from the growing number of children in the community who are not equipped with soft skills and basic life skills that are needed to transition successfully into adulthood. The SSYFC is aimed at developing on the skills of each child, whether by fora, one-on-one sessions or outreach programmes,” she offered.

“When we acquire the centre, we can do so much more, provide guidance, assist in enrolling in vocational schools, track progress with the help of mentors in the community who will be assigned to each child. We want Salt Spring to be the community where we live, do business and raise families.”

The SSYC says it is estimated approximately $570,000 will be needed for the construction of the centre, and is actively seeking sponsorship and donations to assist in developing the facility.


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