// September 12th, 2013 // No Comments » // News
The members of the HELP Jamaica! team and volunteers got together and took a “team outing” trip to Alligator Pond on July 6, before starting Summer school this year.
This was right after we celebrated an accomplishment of facilitating over 120 children attending the center on a daily basis.
Alligator Pond was just the place to be for all team members, as they, for the first time experienced such togetherness and relaxing moments for a change, fostering excellent team building growth, and rewarded themselves for their great everyday efforts. The team enjoyed a day at the beach, some seafood for lunch, time to relax and a friendly soccer match against a local team right at the beach – and what should i say our team beat them bad!
This year’s Summer Program at the HELP Jamaica! Center was most exciting. There were many activities with bursts of excitement.
Our programs included First Aid Training, Arts and Craft – including Basketry, Sewing, Jewelry Making, Gift Boxes, Bows and Tying of gift boxes, Balloon Craft, Flower Decorating, Sign Language, Yoga and much more.
Music was ongoing, as the children sang at intervals and especially when they were returning from any outing, which signified much enjoyment. More than one hundred children attended daily, and this year was a breaking year with much planned activities, as most children had no other place to spend their summer vacation after a stressful year of regulated classes within the school system.
Our Center at Cassava Piece was the place to relax and have fun. We had children from all areas, even from rural Jamaica visiting the Education Center daily to partake in the Summer Sessions!
Trip to Sport Games at ‘Mona Bowl’
On July 13, 2013 our first field trip with the children was to the CVSS Annual Games held at the ‘Mona Bowl’ UWI Campus in Kingston. It was a wonderful day full of fun for everybody, 44 excited kids entering one bus, ready to roll out…
At this function our children met the Canadian ambassador, who was the patron at the games. It was a first encounter for the children as they got an opportunity to mingle with other children from communities like theirs. The level of competition was very high, and the children learnt how important it was to be prepared for competitiveness, not only for themselves but with others.
Trip to Wynters Park & Farm
During the first phase of Summer School also, we accommodated 31 children to Wynters Park and Farm, Kitson Town, St Catherine, a popular park for children from all over Jamaica to enjoy different recreational activities. They had a day of fun. Wynters Park is a popular venue for birthday parties, weddings and reception. The children enjoyed the host of activities provided for them and had lunch provided by the park’s management. The kids enjoyed the many slides, swings, bounce-about, see-saw, pony horse and tyre swings as well as the mini zoo and a great view from the mountain top.
Jamaican football celebrities visiting the Center
At July 26, 2013, we welcomed Andrew Price – head of the Jamaican Premier League together with Carlos Wright – Boys Town, Jermaine (Tuffy) Anderson – Waterhouse, Kasai Hinds – Tivoli Gardens Football Club and Raylon Paisley – Arnett Gardens to the Center!
The visit was to establish a little League Football Club at the Center to assist the children of the Cassava Piece and surrounding inner-city communities. The league is to accommodate school age boys ages 6 – 16. Children registered in the club are from Cassava Piece, Big Yard, Grants Pen, Manning’s Hill Road, Whitehall Avenue, and Red Hills Road and as far as Lawrence Tavern and Ackee Walk.
Andrew Price – head of the Premier League, handed over six footballs to the team players and children in attendance at the Center!
Our first summer session ended with an Award Ceremony, and team members and volunteers presented the children with certificates and gift items for their participation and attendance.
Three day history workshop
Thirty eight children and team members of the HELP Jamaica! Education Center enjoyed three amazing days of history workshops at the Center with drama, music, art, documentaries, dub poetry, discussions, with the theme being “ Jamaican national heroes, their struggles and tribulations, their visions and their missions!
We discussed these historic topics, talked about the meaning of these historic events which affected them then and for us especially the young generation today! The youths were amazed at the information they received, they were fascinated by their history and clearly saw the problems which existed then and now, and tried to find out some of the answers. We really need to start listening!
History workshop trip to Portland
Our final trip for the summer was to Charles Town, Buff Bay, and Moore Town in the parish of Portland.
The field trip to visit the Charles Town Maroons was full of positive spirit and vibes! We all really enjoyed the outing, learned a lot about the Windward Maroons and their customs, and experienced Maroon food, drumming and dancing! We traveled further up into the mountains of the Rio Grande and paid respect to Nanny, visited the spot where she was buried and the monument erected in her honor at Moore Town and learned more about the Maroons in that area and stories of the wars against colonialism and slavery.
After a day of joy, full of new knowledge and experiences and with pride in Jamaica’s heritage, we returned safe and sound to Kingston in the evening.
The last weeks of Summer School Session Two, continued with much fun, joy and enthusiasm as the children summed up their holidays at the HELP Jamaica! Education Center! - remembering the theme song and chorus of the History Workshop which theme song rang in their ears “we deh pon a mission, mission, mission!”
Our much improved Summer Program 2013 was a great success, and we at the Center have already published our new schedule of courses for the new school term.
Slideshow of the Summer Program 2013