Story Highlights The Women’s Centre of Jamaica Foundation (WCJF) has received a donation of 20 laptops, which will go towards preparing teen mothers for Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) tests. Acting Director of Corporate Liaison Services in the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Tracey Lindsay, thanked the donors for their support. She noted that the donation of the computers will enhance student engagement as “we only have one computer per site so all the girls would huddle around the one machine and that had significant limitations.”

The Women’s Centre of Jamaica Foundation (WCJF) has received a donation of 20 laptops, which will go towards preparing teen mothers for Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) tests.

The computers were provided under the Women Helping Others Achieve (WHOA) programme, which involves collaboration between the Sandals and the Bob Marley foundations.

Acting Director of Corporate Liaison Services in the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Tracey Lindsay, thanked the donors for their support.

She was addressing the handover ceremony on June 10 at the WCJF Trafalgar Road headquarters in New Kingston.

Ms. Lindsay noted that the computers will enable the young mothers to excel in their academic pursuits.

“Computers and related technologies are seen as the most important tools to ensure success in education. They will provide these young people with a platform on which to grow and develop into global citizens and position themselves among the most successful young people on this planet,” she pointed out.

Executive Director of the WCJF, Dr. Zoe Simpson, told JIS News that the computers will be utilised in the WCJF’s Virtual Delivery Infrastructure (VDI) Programme.

©Oberto Anselmi

Implemented in September 2015, the initiative offers distance learning for students through its seven centres and 12 outreach sites across the island.

“Prior to that, the girls would have to come from the rural areas to Kingston for CSEC classes,” Dr. Simpson informed.

She noted that the donation of the computers will enhance student engagement as “we only have one computer per site so all the girls would huddle around the one machine and that had significant limitations.”

This year, 49 students will be sitting the CSEC examinations – 29 from rural areas and 20 from Kingston.

The WCJF seeks to assist adolescent girls, 17 years and younger, who become pregnant while in school, to complete their secondary education.

To date, more than 45,000 teen mothers have been assisted through the programme with graduates pursuing higher education or gainfully employed.

WHOA, established in February 2016, seeks to provide support, mentorship, education and skills training to assist marginalised women across Jamaica and the Caribbean to excel in their academic and career pursuits.

“Investing in women and young girls is a way to make a huge impact in the home and the larger community,” said Director of Programmes, Sandals Foundation, Heidi Clarke.

“When you have an education you can do anything. Any door can open at any time. For WHOA, it is about investing in your education so that you can in turn sustain yourselves,” she pointed out.

Communications Manager, Bob Marley Foundation, Alicia Williams, for her part, said the entity is proud of the collaboration with Sandals Foundation to assist young mothers at the WCJF.

“We have to give them the kind of security that they need to ensure that they become the kind of adults that they want to become that will benefit their families and communities and the nation ultimately,” she noted.

Related Stories OCA to Distribute Internet Safety Guidelines in May Youth Must Pursue Success – Education Minister Youth Information Centres to be Restructured Gov’t to Create Youth Advisory Board

©Oberto Anselmi

Tags: Sanders, Primarias, USA