US Embassy Jamaica provides over $21 million to support local education and conservation programs

United States Ambassador to Jamaica N Nick Perry (center) and representatives of six local entities that were presented with more than $21 million to help them conduct programs in education, youth development, conflict resolution, and animal conservation. They are (in front) Taneshia Stoney-Dryden (left) of United Way of Jamaica, and Lisa D’Oyen, Seprod Foundation. Back row (from left) Tanikie McClarthy, JWN Foundation; Kadeem Petgrave, Educatours; Simier Lansend, Educatours; Maureen Davis-Atkinson, Creative Language-Based Learning; Professor Rosalea Hamilton, LASCO Chin Foundation; and Lisandra Jureidini, Creative Language-Based Learning.

United States Ambassador to Jamaica Nick Perry officially handed over approximately $21 million to six local entities through the Embassy’s Public Diplomacy Federal Awards Program. The beneficiaries will undertake activities spanning several sectors and themes including education, youth development, conflict resolution and animal conservation.

The six awards were issued following the embassy’s Notice of Funding Opportunity, which attracted over 70 applicants. The recipients are Creative Language-Based Learning (CLBL) Foundation, Educatours JA Limited, JWN Foundation, Seprod Foundation, United Way of Jamaica and the International Iguana Foundation.

The CLBL Foundation is a non-profit, educational initiative designed to improve the learning ability of children across Jamaica, by developing a community of early childhood and special needs educators. Led by founder Mandy Melville, CLBL will execute a program involving literacy and numeracy training for teachers throughout the island.

Educatours JA Limited is an EdTech and adventure tour company, powered by exploration with gamification, storytelling and technology to enhance tours and learning. Co-founders Kadeem Pet-Grave and Simier Lansend will undertake a “Math and Money Challenge” aimed at addressing math anxiety and strengthening financial literacy among marginalized youth.

Known for their philanthropic pursuits, the JWN Foundation will delve into the issue of conflict resolution in schools. In partnership with the LASCO Chin Foundation and Learn The Fun, the JWN Foundation will facilitate intensive training for teachers and student participants on techniques to prevent dangerous and violent situations, towards promoting safe living and learning environments.

The Seprod Foundation will engage youth between the ages of six to 12 years for its Edu-Skate Extended program. Through this sport-based educational initiative, the foundation will aim to empower youth with life skills that instill discipline, determination, and self-motivation to achieve healthy personal goals.

The Read Right from the Start Train the Trainer program, led by the United Way of Jamaica, will aim to improve the capacity of teachers within the early childhood sector to deliver effective language and literacy programs to children from birth to six years old. The United Way of Jamaica will also collaborate with the United Way of Greater Atlanta and language and literacy experts from the Rollins Center, to conduct face-to-face training sessions in Jamaica with groups of early childhood teachers and representatives of the Early Childhood Commission.

Caribbean Rock Iguanas are the most endangered group of lizards in the world and the Jamaican Rock Iguana, considered critically endangered, is arguably the most threatened among them. The International Iguana Foundation will undertake the ‘Enhancing Conservation and Management of the Jamaican Rock Iguana’. This program highlights the progress that can be achieved through strong partnerships between US and Jamaican stakeholders.

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