Minister Grange: Government making major investments in sport development
“Since 2016 we have invested over $121 million in sport infrastructure development in schools and communities and we are committed to continue this work,” Minister Grange said.
The minister noted that incorporating sport in developmental plans and programmes of the country is of “utmost importance” as sport is “key to Jamaica’s success and one of the primary drivers for prosperity, social and economic growth”.
The approach of investing in school and community facilities will enable student athletes to have access to requisite, modern facilities and equipment for training.
“We are aware that although there has been tremendous success in sport, many student athletes still lack modern facilities for training. This has always been a major concern for my Ministry and while the government make every effort to address this issue primarily through special rehabilitation of playfields and other physical infrastructure projects, we know that much more needs to be done” Minister Grange added.
Minister Grange was speaking at the launch of the third Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship in Kingston on Wednesday.
The Minister also urged student athletes to use every opportunity they get for growth and development.
The events to be contested over the five-meet Digicel Grand Prix series will be the 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, long jump, high jump, discus and 4x400m.
This year, student athletes from over 200 high schools in Jamaica will participate in the series.
The defending champion schools are St Elizabeth Technical High School in the boys category and Edwin Allen in the girls.
School teams will vie for the title of Digicel Grand Prix Champion and $1 million towards gym equipment or development of their school’s training facilities.
Record-breaking athletes will also be up for individual scholarships ranging from $25,000 to $50,000 each.
Also, the top performing boy and girl will also win a once-in-a-lifetime all-expense paid trip to the 2017 World Relays to be held in the Bahamas this April.
The two selected athletes will be named Most Valuable Athletes for the 2017 Championships.
2017 DIGICEL GRAND PRIX SCHEDULE
(1) Saturday February 18 – Western Championship Catherine Hall, Montego Bay
(2) Tuesday February 28 – Eastern Championships – Usain Bolt Track, UWI
(3) Thursday March 2 - Anthrick Corporate Area Development Meet – Usain Bolt Track, UWI
(4) Wednesday March 8 – Central Championships – GC Foster College, St Catherine, Spanish town
(5) Saturday March 11 – GC Foster Classics –National Stadium, Kingston
FEATURED IMAGE CAPTION: Sports Minister Olivia 'Babsy' Grange makes his address during the launch of the 2017 Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship on Wednesday at the Digicel headquarters in downtown Kingston.