Flagaman Irrigation System Feasibility Study Far Advanced

State Minister in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture, and Fisheries, Hon. Floyd Green, says the feasibility study being developed for the proposed irrigation system in Flagaman, St. Elizabeth, is far advanced. The system is projected to take water from the Black River to supply some 5,000 farmers whose cultivations are impacted by drought annually. Story Highlights Mr. Green told JIS News that the consultants’ midway report for the study has determined that the Black River has the capacity to adequately supply Flagaman and adjoining communities. State Minister in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture, and Fisheries, Hon. Floyd Green, says the feasibility study being developed for the proposed irrigation system in Flagaman, St. Elizabeth, is far advanced.The system is projected to take water from the Black River to supply some 5,000 farmers whose cultivations are impacted by drought annually.Mr. Green told JIS News that the consultants’ midway report for the study has determined that the Black River has the capacity to adequately supply Flagaman and adjoining communities.“The consultants have spoken to farmers, they have actually measured all the areas, they have gone to the Black River, [and] looked at its capacity to supply the area,” he further indicated.Additionally, Mr. Green said plans are underway to design the layout of the irrigation system and determine the cost for the project’s implementation.He advised that the final report on the study should be completed by December, thereby enabling the Government to allocate funding for the project’s execution.Mr. Green assured that the Administration remains committed to remedying the adverse drought conditions affecting the farmers.“The reality is that Flagaman is one of the most populated farming areas in Jamaica, but they have never had an irrigated water supply. I am confident when I say that… the Government will be providing irrigation for the farmers,” he said.Mr. Green said it is anticipated that this intervention will increase agricultural productivity and boost economic growth in Flagaman. read more

Womens Centre Improves Programme Offerings

The Women’s Centre of Jamaica Foundation (WCJF) has made two changes to its Programme for Adolescent Mothers (PAM), which is delivered at the Centre’s 18 locations across the island.The changes, which came into effect at the start of the 2019/2020 academic year, involve increasing academic instruction from four to five days per week and the offering of three new subjects.“We are now going to be operating a five-day week for the girls to access their academic instructions, the extent of counselling and the vocational subjects,” said WCJF Executive Director, Dr. Zoe Simpson at a JIS Think Tank on September 6.She said that the changes will better prepare the girls to return to the formal school system.“We are now offering English Literature, Principles of Business and Civics. Some of these subjects are offered to the girls who are doing their school-leaving exams but the girls that we want to call the ‘lower-school girls’ were not exposed to them.“Hence as we seek to better prepare them to return to the formal school system, we are now introducing to the girls that are going to be reintegrated, these additional subjects,” Dr. Simpson said.She noted that the focus of the WCJF is to educate adolescent mothers in an environment of inclusivity and equity.“We want all the adolescent mothers in Jamaica to access and to continue their education during the period of their pregnancies, and all of them should be on par with their peers when they return to school,” she said.“They must not be left behind on account of a pregnancy. It doesn’t matter that a girl is pregnant; she can still achieve all her life goals and we want to walk beside her to ensure that she achieves those goals,” Dr. Simpson added. Story Highlights “We are now offering English Literature, Principles of Business and Civics. Some of these subjects are offered to the girls who are doing their school-leaving exams but the girls that we want to call the ‘lower-school girls’ were not exposed to them. The changes, which came into effect at the start of the 2019/2020 academic year, involve increasing academic instruction from four to five days per week and the offering of three new subjects. “They must not be left behind on account of a pregnancy. It doesn’t matter that a girl is pregnant; she can still achieve all her life goals and we want to walk beside her to ensure that she achieves those goals,” Dr. Simpson added. read more

PublicSector Workers Should Be Given Minimum Hours of Training – JCSA President

Story Highlights President of the Jamaica Civil Service Association (JCSA), O’Neil Grant, has suggested that public-sector workers should be given some minimum hours of training per year, enabling them to become more valuable to their organisations. Speaking at a JIS Think Tank, at the agency’s Montego Bay Regional Office in St. James on September 9, Mr. Grant said this would inevitably lead to a more rounded workforce, where employers would not only see an increase in productivity but also invaluable returns on their investments. “We champion education and training a lot within this organisation. One of the things we have been advocating for, and we are seeing signs that it may happen, is that every single worker, regardless of where you work and the job that you do, should be allowed some time for training per year,” he said. President of the Jamaica Civil Service Association (JCSA), O’Neil Grant, has suggested that public-sector workers should be given some minimum hours of training per year, enabling them to become more valuable to their organisations.Speaking at a JIS Think Tank, at the agency’s Montego Bay Regional Office in St. James on September 9, Mr. Grant said this would inevitably lead to a more rounded workforce, where employers would not only see an increase in productivity but also invaluable returns on their investments.“We champion education and training a lot within this organisation. One of the things we have been advocating for, and we are seeing signs that it may happen, is that every single worker, regardless of where you work and the job that you do, should be allowed some time for training per year,” he said.“If that happens, what it means is that people will continue to upgrade their skills or be given new skills in the workplace where they can now broaden their horizon and be more indispensable to the public sector,” Mr. Grant added.The President said that in such a scenario, the entire country also stands to benefit as the Government would now be able to move workers into the specific skill areas in which they are needed and, especially, with the knowledge that they had been trained.“When you make the investment to train a person for a particular skill you will then know what you have at your disposal to meet a certain demand,” he noted.“We are also hoping that the Government’s training budget will be housed in one central authority, which is the Institute for National Development. If this becomes a reality, we should be able to see other spinoffs from that, with the creation of places where persons can go and study,” the President said.Mr. Grant said that another option could also be the expansion of the online study programmes where persons do not have to travel very far distances and where they can be enrolled in courses at their own leisure.He said that once the courses are completed and persons are accredited, then a profile is created where employers would have no problem finding persons to fill skilled positions.“Rather than persons having to go through a lottery to vie for a positon, they would be invited to participate in an interview based on their profile. We are hoping that as an association, we will be able to get this done,” Mr. Grant added. read more

PHOTOS Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Project Handover Ceremony

Acting Director General, Jamaica Agricultural Commodities Regulatory Authority (JACRA), Gusland McCook (left), is presented with a coffee seedling by Ambassador of Japan to Jamaica, His Excellency Hiromasa Yamazaki, at the Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Project’s handover ceremony of coffee seedlings to farmers, on October 4 at Rose Hill, Woodford, in the Blue Mountains. Deputy Chairman, Jamaica Agricultural Commodities Regulatory Authority (JACRA) Board of Directors, John Minott (left), presents a coffee seedling to Nadine Mullings, farmer from Middleton district, at the Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Project’s presentation of coffee seedlings to farmers, held on October 4 at Rose Hill, Woodford, in the Blue Mountains. Councillor, Gordon Town Division, Neville Whittaker (left), and Acting Director General, Jamaica Agricultural Commodities Regulatory Authority (JACRA), Gusland McCook (centre), are presented with a coffee seedling by Ambassador of Japan to Jamaica, His Excellency Hiromasa Yamazaki, at the Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Project’s presentation of coffee seedlings to farmers, on October 4, at Rose Hill, Woodford, in the Blue Mountains. Deputy Chairman, Jamaica Agricultural Commodities Regulatory Authority (JACRA) Board of Directors, John Minott (left), presents a coffee seedling to farmer from Red Light District, Clifford Jonas, at the Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Project’s handover ceremony, held on October 4 at Rose Hill, Woodford, in the Blue Mountains. read more